Tuesday, March 21, 2006

The Glow Worm

I have been researching glow worms for a little project on bioluminescence. Apparently they live very happily on small snails and are not worms at all but beetles. There is more on them here.

Just the thing for a 101 WORD STORY...

He had wings, I did not. Wait for me, he said, so I did. Up a stem then down again, every night for a week. It was a hot mid-summer, no rain, no excuses, but he didn't come. I glowed with rage. Then I shone with embarrassment. I told myself he didn't matter, that there were plenty more bugs in the air - and lit the sky with my mournful radiance.

Which, it turned out, did the trick.

A multiple birth! Glow now, they say, but I cannot. It will be the death of me, I say, and know I am right..
Link

15 Comments:

Blogger J. Erik Lundberg said...

Very lovely, Clare. An epic story in 101 words.

Tue Mar 21, 11:39:00 pm  
Blogger Cathy Timberlake said...

A beautiful, haunting, sad sad story with a happy ending. I really loved it.

Wed Mar 22, 04:31:00 pm  
Blogger Jonathan said...

hmm, can't see the ending being all that happy myself...

Paul Muldoon has a poem about genetically altered cauliflowers that glow in the dark. It can be read here.

I particularly like the ending:

And the cauliflowers
in an unmarked pit, that were harvested
by their own light.

Wed Mar 22, 10:13:00 pm  
Anonymous Clare said...

Thank you Jason, Cathy, Jonathan - you're all very kind.

Thank you for the link to the poem Jonathan. I too love the ending. Though I didn't get it, at first, and it seemed not sparse enough to be a poem, but I kept reading it and it started to mean more - and eventually came to mean something quite sad.

Jonathan: I wanted to post a comment on your blog but couldn't get the word verification correct. Then the same word appeared on this blog so i couldn't make a comment on my own blog either. I seem to be jinxed this week. In the end resorted to removing the word verification.

Thu Mar 23, 12:23:00 pm  
Blogger Cathy Timberlake said...

Dear Jonathan it was happy because she managed to work out how to attract her mate, but I guess it was sad because she lost her glow, poor thing.

Thu Mar 23, 05:10:00 pm  
Anonymous Adrian said...

Re Paul Muldoon's poem. If, like a lot of euqually irritatingly tin-eared and clunky rhythmically inept "poems", you copy it to a word processor and convert the line breaks to spaces, you get a powerful and vivid piece of short prose.

Fri Mar 24, 01:32:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Paul Muldoon
Said "Adrian's an admirer,
You'll read it soon
In the National Enquirer"

Sat Mar 25, 09:36:00 am  
Anonymous Clare said...

heh heh heh - excellent stuff...

Sat Mar 25, 08:20:00 pm  
Blogger squarea said...

Adrian said Re Paul Muldoon's poem. If, like a lot of euqually irritatingly tin-eared and clunky rhythmically inept "poems", you copy it to a word processor and convert the line breaks to spaces, you get a powerful and vivid piece of short prose.


Er, actually it's a sestina. It's brilliantly understated. Muldoon is the last poet I would describe as tin-eared.

Sat Mar 25, 10:10:00 pm  
Anonymous clare said...

Thank you Squarea, very interesting - yet another poetic form I have never heard of - there seem to be so many. I am puzzled though - the definition says...

''In the five stanzas following the first one which sets it up; the same six words must end the six lines, in a strictly prescribed variation of order....'

(from the Wlkpedia defintion of a sestina)

I can't see that Muldoon's does this. A free form sestina perhaps? Is there such a thing?

Sat Mar 25, 11:52:00 pm  
Blogger squarea said...

Thank you Squarea, very interesting - yet another poetic form I have never heard of - there seem to be so many. I am puzzled though - the definition says...

''In the five stanzas following the first one which sets it up; the same six words must end the six lines, in a strictly prescribed variation of order....'

(from the Wlkpedia defintion of a sestina)

I can't see that Muldoon's does this. A free form sestina perhaps? Is there such a thing?


Oh, yes, he does. Muldoon is very subtle with his rhymes and repetitions. Eg – market/make out/ mudguard/ marked/ Magritte's/ Margaret/ unmarked

Sun Mar 26, 02:05:00 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Er, aren't we missing the force of Adrian's comments? "Tin eared" refers to the 'tin cry' that you get if you bend a bar formed from pure tin. So, as Muldoon 'bends' the sestina form, his point cries out to us ever more strongly. And 'clunky' is a, perhaps rather cruel, take on those of us who only see the surface of things- the BMW owning set. Five cylinders going from top dead centre to bottom dead centre clearly show the iambic pentameter of the common, mechanical, English examples of the sestina. Muldoon's clunky misfiring rythym makes us look beneath a polished exterior to consider the powerhouse within.
Masterful, Adrian- for those in the know.

Sun Mar 26, 10:24:00 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Odd no spiders glow:
But on the web, some threads can
Be incandescent.

Sun Mar 26, 12:52:00 pm  
Anonymous Clare said...

Well thank you all - very interesting discussion and I have learnt a lot.

I am not very well-versed (sorry) in poetic forms I am afraid but I do know what I like - and some of what I like is on Jonathan Wonham's website (via Connaissances). There are some fine poems here in my opinion. I especially like THIS PURE CHILD and THE LIFE MODEL. They do all that I love in a poem - give me a new way of looking at the world in a beautiful, direct and simple way. They are terse and yet say a lot.

Thanks for the Haiku, anon - good thing that spider webs are only incandescent rather than glow - in this house we'd never get to sleep.

Mon Mar 27, 09:33:00 am  
Blogger Jonathan said...

Thank you Clare. I appreciate your comments very much.

Sun Apr 09, 12:52:00 am  

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