This poem is about all the times I've waited for an answer to prayer, especially 2004-2011. Things were bad then. For some reason, the thoughts returned recently while I was listening to U2's song One. In only two days, I finished writing Waiting. Check it out by clicking "read more."
Pyramid Crab And Kin:
While the beaked crab has one backbone and one mouth, most of the other cave dwellers have two. Two-headed centipedes pick shells clean, as do the hand crabs. Sometimes resembling hands, hand crabs have anywhere from five to thirteen legs, with the odd one being directly in front between the two mouths. It uses this appendage to break up and wedge apart shells. Hand crabs also have an outer protective shell to retract into, the extensions around their legs resembling sleeves.
Pyramid crabs have much thicker shells with an angled design that makes it hard to get a grip on them. Their forward appendage (which fits in a notch on this shell when raised) is very strong and ends in a massive claw. It uses this not only to smash open shells, but for defense and to right themselves should they be flipped over.
I have decided to change the name of planet Snax to planet Ectora. It sounds a lot better and there are fewer questions about spelling. I definitely plan on making a book out of this one day. Below is a beaked crab.
Over hundreds of years the reef grows thicker and thicker. Huge bulges of polyp animal shells and clapping worm castles swell upwards and merge together, leaving narrow gaps below. Over time, an extensive cave system develops and provides a habitat for an entirely different set of organisms.
Deeper underground, beaked crabs break apart the old shells for traces of organic matter. Their specialized digestive systems dissolve silicon carbide in order to free every particle of nutrition. The angle of their legs allows them to scale nearly vertical surfaces. Over many years they will hollow out large caverns and are a major cause of sinkholes.
This creature looks like and lives as a fish, but it is actually an air-breathing reptile. It reminds me of one I drew here.
At one time in 2013 I had given up writing at my politics blog. This year, I find myself going back to it sometimes, spilling whatever is on my mind, but I still don't feel up to a polite conversation or a debate. Everybody is making me angry at the moment and there are at least two sides to every story. If you don't mind being shocked and offended, you are free to read about my observations on the subject at TheUnderstandingProject.com.
There was an exceptional sunset yesterday that made me think for a second that the sun had crashed and exploded. The photographs do not even begin to show it as I saw it. The colors are off, the glare dominates, and the resolution is too low. I need a better camera.
One of the things that makes Florida so great are the clouds. They just seem to have so much more depth, size, and detail than they do up north. I guess it is how Florida makes up for not having cool mountains. Below are some of the clouds that were behind me as the sun set.
Instead of doodling, I’ve been doing a lot of reading.
I recently read To Control The Stars by Robert Hoskins. It reminds me a lot of both Stargate and Asimov’s Foundation Series. It is very good and has several unexpected twists throughout the story. There is a lot of action. There is talk of the complex future evolution of political and social systems and an epic struggle for power. Five stars.
The Destiny of The Sword is the third book in The Seventh Sword series by Dave Duncan, but I did not know that when I bought it. It stands alone as a complete story and the necessary backstory is well introduced. While technically nothing was wrong with it, it was just a touch on the boring side. Four stars.
I also read Strange Attractors and The Infinite Sea by Jeffrey A. Carver, books two and three in The Chaos Chronicles. Carver’s characters seem to be exceptionally shallow and their actions sometimes come across as forced and unexpected. In one case, a character was considered by another to have just the qualities he was looking for. What were these qualities and how did he know that after only knowing him for a short time? I never found out. In contrast to his characters, his settings are amazing. Only one other author has ever come close to the depth and creativity of detail in weaving together alien biology, technology, and exotic physics with mysterious hints of even more. Even without pictures, I find it beautiful. Carver also wrote The Infinity Link, which has much better characters but a disappointing ending. The setting is also fantastic. I just want to live inside that asteroid and learn as much as I can. Worlds within worlds within worlds. Three stars.
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I'm not sure if I want to put this in the Planet Snax book or not. The above creature is called either a sea moth or a sea mosquito. It uses its needle-like mouth to suck juices from plants and animals of the reefs. The bulges on its snout are pumps. This species has two antennae with three eyes each. Other species can have zero or three antennae and a total of zero to twelve eyes.
One billion years ago, sea mosquitoes were the dominant form of swimming life on Snax. They sucked juices from puzzle sponges, the dominant reef-builder at the time. Now the only puzzle sponges to escape extinction are the highly toxic ones and the only sea mosquitoes to survive are those that have become specialists in feeding on other types of organisms.
By far, the strangest reef inhabitants are dodecablobons. They are made of twelve, semi-autonomous, worm-like bodies attached in a row to a common trunk that allows them to share an oxygen circulatory system (some are also capable of sharing nutrients). Some bodies are predators, others herbivores, others filter-feeders, others decomposers and detritivores, others parasites, and others contain symbiotic photosynthetic or chemosynthetic monocells. Some have gills and some have lungs (they will on occasion wander onto shore or float on the surface when the water becomes polluted by excessive monocells). Any one of them can go dormant and accept a protective mucus secreted by the central mass to prevent drying, abrasion, or damage from extremes of PH. This makes them extremely versatile and able to adapt to different habitats. The central nervous system operates on a "rotating presidency" principle. Each of the twelve members of the symbiosis takes turns at control of the central mass and locomotion of the creature, while the other eleven retain control only over themselves.
Some dodecablobons’ member bodies grow all the way around the central trunk and so resemble the segments of a worm.
One dodecablobon that resembles a segmented worm is the rhinoceros fern fish. The first segment forms a rhinoceros-like head, the next seven segments each have two lateral swimming fins, and the last four segments form a distinct, tapering abdomen with four vertical fins above and four vertical fins below. The horn is used to break free reef-building animals or weeds so they can be sucked into any one of its twelve mouths. Some of the other segments have horns as well. It is among the most colorful and most rare of the reef’s inhabitants.
Hello, my name is Dan. I am an author, artist, explorer, and contemplator of subjects large and small. I like bacon. I like pizza. I like bacon pizza. I enjoy long walks on the beach, but prefer the mountains. I am a huge fan of Jesus. When I grow up, I want to be just like him and create my own universes.