Sunday, April 5, 2009

an impression of the man police

Dear Laws of Silence:

This is a field of colza. In English it's more commonly known as rape, or rapeseed. The plant is cultivated extensively in France for its oil, which can be used for a variety of industrial and nutritional purposes. It has become much more prominent of late as an ingredient in biodiesel.

On my drive to work it covers the land to either side of the highway, acre upon acre, the yellow and green carpet visible for at least 20 minutes of the 35-minute journey.

As I look out over the rolling landscape my mind wanders back over the distances of time, and one phrase repeats itself over-and-over, endlessly: "fields of rape...."

Bucolic, brutal, beautiful.

Kind regards,

Théophile Prades
Beaupuy, France.

1 comment:

  1. Strange Latin roots.*

    As a noun, the Latin rapi refers to turnip (which is related to the plant that provides rapeseed).

    As a verb, the Latin rapi means "drag off; snatch; destroy; seize, carry off; pillage; hurry."

    The verb made a clear transition to English: rapid; rape (the bad kind).

    The noun had a curiouser route to English. The alternate, nape became neep for the Norweigans, and informed turnip in English with the addition of turn in reference to its rounded shape ... at least that's one theory. The origins of parsnip suggest this theory may be inaccurate.

    * See:


Thanks for taking the time to comment!

Need to add an image? Use this code: [ximg]IMAGE-URL-HERE[x/img]. You will need to remove the the boldface x's from the code to make it work.

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.