All Agog, or “how we didn’t forget”


I first saw the phrase “I’m all agog” in an old children’s book, in a poem about a man named John Gilpin.  I was eight and fell in love Asian Elephant and Babywith the word the way only an eight year old can – I even loved the way the word “agog” looked like a pair of starting, staring, amazed eyes. In my teens, “agog” got tangled up in my mind with a term of affectionate mockery used in Scotland centuries ago to describe an oversized mountain of a man: “Tha’ great lumping Gog,” they would exclaim. “You elephant.” In my mental web of meanings and ideas, to be agog became the experience of a great, huge gallump of anticipation – to stare up at a great mountain of excitement .

Many of you, like me, have been all agog to hear the results of the Brighter Light challenge of January. Every poem posted is pretty amazing, and I can’t imagine how hard it must be for Andrea  to decide between  all these bright lights.

Andrea was very much hoping that she would have the results of the contest for us by now, but it’s taking more time than she thought. I’m not surprised – too many amazing pieces of work here. She wanted to let you know that we haven’t forgotten and the results will be posted as soon as ever we can along with the prizes. Just like the storybook elephants, InOurBooks didn’t forget.

This evening, my child (and Brighter Light co-author) and I finally looked up “agog” in the dictionary. To be agog is to be: highly excited by eagerness, curiosity and anticipation. It turns out that my labyrinth of meaning wasn’t that far off. So really…we’re all agog, and I’ll post more about the challenge when we are closer to the results ~ InaGo Elephants, The YMCA is Not a White Elephant - geograph.org.uk - 940795

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7 thoughts on “All Agog, or “how we didn’t forget”

  1. I completely understand. I certainly wouldn’t want to be the judge. So I will be patient. In the meantime, there are others things I can do. For instance, today I learned a new word. Agog. Never heard of it before, so tthanks!

  2. Agog! What a wonderful word! And elephants – I used to have a herd (collection) over 300 strong (I’ve given most away but at one time it was displayed at the Alberta Art Gallery as part of their “Edmonton Collections Show” – both my daughter Katy’s teddy bear collection and my elephant collection were chosen – since there were only about 35 collections all told, we were pretty honoured) – These photos of elephants are fantastic; especially the mama and baby…

    And Andrea – take whatever time you need – as others have said, I wouldn’t want to be the judge either – I was gob-smacked by the number and quality of poems you received. Again, it was a superb challenge and loads of fun.

    • I love elephants too! My husband even gave me a painting of flowers painted by an elephant as a birthday present a few years ago. Do you have any pictures of your collection? I’d love to see them. How wonderful to be able to share them with the public it sounds like an AMAZING collection – Were they all small sculptures or were they paintings or pictures or…?

      And yes, Andrea, we all agree – take your time 🙂 We’ll all wait !

      • I know I have photos somewhere (actual photos – this was before digital cameras were the thing so I’ll take a look for them) It was very cool because the Art Gallery built these shelves that started out wide at the bottom and narrowed in a pyramid style up about 3 or 4 floors to a tiny shelf at the top for both my pachyderms and Kate’s bears and they were shown right side by side in the gallery … As for what kind of elephants – everything from collector’s items to antiques to “junk” to artwork to some from all over the world, especially Thailand (we have a friend who vacationed there every year and brought me something different every year but always something elephant-ish) – Oh and a ton of jewelled ones of course, most of which I still have as I couldn’t bear to part with them (and they’re a bit valuable some of them …)Also, because I collected, both girls were given elephant stuffies, elephant clothes, elephant toys of all kinds … and on an on …

      • Sharon, I was thinking of you – I’m doing this massive pre-spring clear out and ran across several stuffed elephants that my little guy has been saving. I haven’t the heart to suggest that he pass them on to someone else…I mean, ELEPHANTS!

  3. Pingback: In which we reappear | in our books

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