Sunday, April 01, 2007

Phosphorescent Creatures

"Coleridge sought out the Brocken spectre of the Harz mountains, but failed to observe it, and had to be content with the sight of a phosphorescent boar." If you love sentences like that as much as I do, hurry and buy yourself a copy of PHANTASMAGORIA by Marina Warner. That phosphorescent boar puts me in mind of the phosphorescent owls in my new book of short stories... owls I borrowed from the work of Charles Fort, whose description of said owls provides my epigraph. I am pleased to note that Mr. Fort rates an entry in Ms. Warner's index. Okay, I won't keep you in suspense, the Brocken spectre was a giant with a halo, and here's a brief scientific explanation of what it really was.