OVERHEARD IN A BUBBLE CHAMBER by Lillian Morrison

OVERHEARD IN A BUBBLE CHAMBER

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Morrison's 38 ""sciencepoems"" sometimes reflect on the stuff of science, sometimes use language and concepts of science as metaphors, images, correlatives, or just cute dressing for human concerns, experiences, and relationships. Most are at least mildly clever, and Morrison occasionally surprises us with an original conceit, as in ""Plate Techtonics on Waking"": ""The continents in the brain/ are rearranging themselves./ The map of the world/ settles."" ""Poets and Mathematicians"" essentially repeats a commonplace observation, but does so elegantly for readers who won't find it familiar. In ""The Flow, the Void,"" a common adolescent response to a cold cosmic comfort is nicely put. The middle section reads: ""From a bone, now dust,/ grows an apricot./ That's comforting, a little,/ but I'd rather not/ face disembodiment,/ yours or mine/ for the sake of the divine/ plan of the universe/ and its claims./ Yes, we are bits of energy/ but we have names."" The title poem and one or two others (most notably ""Some Quarks Have a Strange Flavor"") verge on gimmicky displays of the whimsical terms of quark theory; and ""Holes,"" comparing gaps left by gone loved ones with black holes, is just banal. But overall this is a well-sustained novelty, frequently transcending novelty in images and reflections that young readers might well find exciting.

Pub Date: March 16th, 1981
Publisher: Lothrop, Lee & Shepard