Could You Write a Science Haiku?

I’ve decided to take foot to Dave Ng’s call for science+art writing.

What I’ve done is reached back through the 5 years of undergraduate science courses I have taken, and ‘randomly’ (not so randomly) taken words from my memory to form science-ladden Haiku. I may or may not have used the actual words, in which case they only served to inspire.

My word list:

  • Coleopteran: pertaining to beetles (order Coleoptera)
  • Detritivore: a heterotrophic organism (eats things to gain energy – like us, but unlike plants) that feeds on dead or decaying organisms
  • Chemotaxis: a movement toward or away from a chemical stimulus
  • Decarboxylation: a chemical reaction involving the removal of a carboxyl group as carbon dioxide
  • Nanoflagellate: a generic term for a small, single celled flagellate (member of the overarching Kingdom Protista)

And the results (bear in mind – I’m not a Haiku master…yet):

bites constitute a mighty
(I realise this isn’t in the form of a traditional Haiku, but starting and ending with one word – c’mon, fun!)

sit still, stop spinning, slowdown,
microbial rogue!
(when you watch these tiny cells under a microscope, they zoom past your field of vision – making it nearly impossible to identify exactly what you saw)

Vroom goes the car vroom,
Smash goes the wooden fence smash.
Dead cattle say nil.
(Inspired by: detritivore)

Chemophiles can kill:
coincidentally, so
can too much carbon
(Inspired by: chemotaxis and decarboxylation; NOTE: chemophile is not a real word, although I wish it were)

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Dave Semeniuk spends hours locked up in his office, thinking about the role the oceans play in controlling global climate, and unique ways of studying it. He'd also like to shamelessly plug his art practice: