Four Magpies by Bian Jingzhao. Early Ming Dynasty (1368–1644). Hanging scroll; colour on silk.
National Palace Museum Wikimedia.
According to Smithsonian researchers, the brains of tiny spiders are so large that they fill their body cavities and even overflow into their legs. They are essentially walking brains. Researchers measured the central nervous systems of nine species of spiders, everything from giant…
Off of: Greatest B-sides
My legs feel like inflatable plastic baseball bats from your cousin’s tenth birthday party at some multisport complex. I have my hands in my pockets and I can feel an old gum wrapper, probably 5 gum because that’s the kind Mom always buys. I reach behind me to shut the car door. I can hear the rest of the family groaning as they exit our four door hybrid cross range whatever the hell. I am suddenly awake.
I walk around the car and see green and brown, colors that don’t exist where we come from. My eyes are green and brown, but that’s just not the same. This grass is much calmer than the neon fertilized blades that slice my flip-flopped toes in the summer. I see trees entirely untamed, the dirt is completely loose.
My brother is stretching and pulling on his coat, scarf, hat, and gloves. Mom does the same, and calls me over because she thinks I will get lost if I take three more steps away from our car. I put it on and feel weird because things around my neck make me uncomfortable.
I walk to the front of the car, facing the forest. I see the edge of the mountain far away. I try to see the top, and look up and up and up and up. Then I see the sky, and my whole body freezes over, and I tense up my shoulders up to my ears, and I breathe in, and when I breathe out I am like a floating drop of mist somewhere high above us. I take off my scarf and breathe in again, bending my neck back toward my heels and letting my mouth drop open. I see the stars, and they are so close I could whisper and they’d hear me.
Dad strolls next to me and looks up too. He says, “It’s so beautiful.”