Saturday, August 15, 2015

The New Kind of Flesh: "Next emerge the night bugs"

After errors, the night bugs.  I'm sure this line, written in the early 1980's, was inspired by experience a couple of years before during the first part of my stint as a Peace Corps volunteer in Swaziland.  We were "training," which mostly meant getting a variety of kinds of information and experience of the place, and learning at least some of the language, at a training center in the "lowveld," the hot and flat middle part of the country.  I remember one night when I walked out of the dormitory area where I spent most of my evenings reading and listening to transistor radio guitar music from Mozambique, into the brightly lit foyer at the entrance of our building, to find the entire floor, and the walls, covered with apparently dead or dying flying insects that I think of as not moths but the size of moths, exotic insects that I would have been much more worried about had they still been flying -- but all of them, it seemed, had either wounded themselves on the bright lamps at the entrance, or perhaps had gone through some other form of collective dying all at once.  Thus emerged the night bugs.

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