To wrestle with things in the raw is the craving of every healthy human being.  The height of happiness to a child is to scramble up a tree, to plowter through mud, to find shelter in a rock.  The more scratched and torn and filthy he gets in the process, the wilder his grin of delight when he staggers home.  Deprived of this natural outlet, a city boy will find satisfaction in breaking windows, in slashing cinema seats or other boy’s noses. If the immediate matter of making his living were one where a man could use the whole of himself-his strengths, his wits and his imagination, the problem of how to fill his leisure would not arise, and he would be too preoccupied to spend more than the odd day thinking up ways to exterminate his fellows.  His culture would not be imported in canisters from the other side of the world; he would make it himself, from a brain and a heart kept bright and taut with satisfactory living.  It may be fascinating to have a picture of life among peasants of Andalusia flashed to one’s fireside, but how much more fascinating it would be to feel a song of one’s own dancing on one’s own lips out of the joy of one’s own doings.

Katherine Stewart – A Croft in the Hills

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