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Science Poem of the Day: 14 August

National Office

Today’s poem is from Law and Impulse: maths & chemistry poems, published by The Poets Union for National Science Week 2010.

Steve Evans

Luminous Fruit

Pigs bred with implanted
jellyfish genes have noses
that glow in the dark

Giotto’s lemons had it,
but all those fat balls of incandescence
that loomed from his painted plate
like half-warmed streetlights
could not have foreseen this.

We can now read by the light
of a bowl of cherries,
though I prefer the wattage
of a duchess pear for a good mystery,
and the ceiling in my bedroom’s hung
with satsuma plums,
their fleshy glow just right
for an erotic novella.

Outside, the night’s so bright
we forget what darkness was.
The streets are a constellation of flirting colours.
The vast orchards of the eastern valleys
wink advertisements into space
and the whole planet’s surface is littered
with the organic glitter of luminous fruit—
we’re awash in the juice of their light.