Wednesday, September 04, 2002
Satisfying Words

deliquesce -- (1) to melt away (2) Biol. (a) to melt away in the course of growth or decay, as parts of certain fungi (b) to branch into many fine divisions, as leaf veins (3) Chem. to become liquid by absorbing moisture from the air -- deliquescence n. -- deliquescent adj.

palimpsest -- a parchment, tablet, etc. that has been written upon or inscribed two or three times, the previous text or texts having been imperfectly erased and remaining, therefore, still partly visible

scumble -- (1) (a) to soften the outlines or color of (a painting) by applying a thin coat of opaque color (b) to apply (color) in this manner (2) to soften the outlines of (a drawing) by rubbing or blurring (3) to make by either of these processes -- n. (1) a coat of color added in scumbling (2) the softening of outline produced by scumbling

uvula -- (prounounced "you-view-lah"(!) which I think is delightful, by the way) -- the small, fleshy process hanging down from the middle of the soft palate above the back of the tongue

chiaroscuro -- (1) light and shade in a painting, drawing, etc. treated so as to produce the illusion of depth, a dramatic effect, etc. (2) a style of painting, drawing, etc. emphasizing this (3) a painting, drawing, etc. in which chiaroscuro is used -- chiaroscurist n.

embouchure -- (1) the mouth of a river (2) Music (a) the mouthpiece of a wind instrument (b) the method of applying the lips and tongue to the mouthpiece of a wind instrument
Posted by Artichoke Heart | 11:51 PM |

It is very splendid to have an interaction with a
Katydid, particularly when one has never seen one before. But now I have seen two. The first katydid flew onto my porch, late at night. It was a strong flyer, back legs hanging akimbo, with a blunt round head and tiny pin-prick maroon eyes. Its wings were amazingly like leaves. When at rest, the wings looked like two deep-green basil leaves pressed together, right down to the dark patterning of veins. It is quite astonishing to hold out one's hand and have a katydid delicately clamber onto one's finger so that one can look and look and look. Its antennae were quite long and exquisitely sensitive and slender. This first katydid was an Angle-Winged Katydid. The second katydid was basking in the sun on the brick wall of the side window of the China Trough, where I was going to eat lunch with S. and E. The head was slim and tapered down to a brisk point, and it was lighter in color -- more of an apple-jade green, really -- with longer, slimmer, more rectangular wings than the rounded basil-leaf-shaped wings of the Angle-Winged Katydid. This katydid was a Nebraska Conehead Katydid. I once again offered my finger, and the katydid stepped right on with it's pincer-gripped feet, but I had to put it back immediately because S. and E. were around the corner waiting to partake of the lunch trough, and I knew that everyone was exceedingly hungry. I heard S. exclaim, "Where did she go?" and E. replied, "I think she found an insect," and I felt somewhat chagrined that I was holding up the show to ogle insects. Perhaps one of the most splendid things of all about katydids is that they have slits for ears on the insides of their elbows.
Posted by Artichoke Heart | 12:01 PM |
A Cat With A Cone On His Head

There is something exceedingly pathetic about a
Cat With A Cone On His Head. He mopes and skulks, creeping about with his belly to the floor, knocking into things, and is too chagrined to look any of the other cats in the eye. He is obviously depressed and also depressing to be around. Perhaps he even decides to pee on the futon, which kind of pisses one off (no pun intended), but one also feels somewhat badly and empathizes with what must seem like the insurmountable ergonomic difficulties of maneuvering the cone into the entrance of the litter box. It is perhaps even in somewhat poor taste to make fun of the infirmities of one's cat by taking his picture when he is so indisposed, making one feel even more miserable and guilty, but one can't seem to keep from doing it anyway. The vet is no help. He says the cat must remain coned for one more week. Furthermore, it must be noted that one really wishes the vet would refrain from slapping one heartily across the back and calling one "kiddo." It is, for the record, too annoying for words.
Posted by Artichoke Heart | 2:03 AM |
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Books by Artichoke Heart
Beyond Heart Mountain
Year of the Snake

Poems by Artichoke Heart
Songs for a Rainy Season
Toothpick Warriors
Snake Wife
Happy Hour
Girl With A Bowl On Her Head

Pillow Book Courtiers Of The
East Wing
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Pillow Book Courtiers Of The
West Wing
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