Home > Insecta > At the Fiddler’s Convention

At the Fiddler’s Convention

January 7, 2008

In a field behind the stage, darkness rises from the grass
like distant music. Hard of hearing, blunt of sight,
I watch the stars unscroll their secret signs, while here
on earth, the fireflies begin their silent signaling.
Biologists declare Lampyridae’s insistent pulse,
as calm and regular as breath, to be “cold light”
because unlike the fire of sky or bulb, it generates
no heat. But this, while factual, cannot be true.
I witness now the quiet passion of a thousand sparks,
falling in desperate order like a scale, the measured
intervals of flash and counter-flash, telling particulars
of many lives. And while I know that this pursuit and pulse
says more of reproduction than of art, I think
of simple ganglia within my human brain.
What do they know beyond the business
of the moment, muscle’s twitch and synapse-
shock? But by the grace of their oblivious
connection, I catch the last few chords,
watch these green-gold lights, and parse
the pattern that contains this flight.

by Robbi Nester

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  1. January 8, 2008 at 6:38 am

    This is an absolutely wonderful piece. Fireflies are my favourite insects and you have really captured them here.

  2. January 8, 2008 at 9:28 am

    Beautiful work- I love the blend of science, music and poetry (into poetry) here.

  3. Robin Hudechek
    January 9, 2008 at 7:02 pm

    Beautiful poem! Very nice imagery, and very intelligent observation, as well! It beautifully combines the poetic with the scientific, and in doing so captures so much of the beauty, symmetry and mystery of the fireflies, the stars and nature itself. Thank you for publishing this wonderful poem!

  4. February 6, 2012 at 3:00 pm

    Delicate, eloquent, descriptive, wonderfully woven by your skillful hand. I’m duly impressed by all of the pieces I’ve read here of yours. It’s good to “meet other serious writers” who aren’t afraid to poke fun at the masters (such as your parody of Emily Dickinson’s poem) and perhaps, take an occasional shot at themselves, as well – humor will get you through times of trouble and trivial pursuits, for sure. This is a gorgeous poem displaying your obvious finesse with language and metaphor.

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