Wednesday, May 18, 2022

Ode to Owl City's Fireflies

I bid farewell to acrid August,

when my peers’ rude words drove me to tears.

I wished the earth would stop its turning,

I came right here to forget my fears.

I stretched my legs in Starlight Square,                          

beneath the famous figgy tree.

Often, the cold sags my soul,

now I’m free and full of glee.


Fireflies flashed before my eyes,

when I raised my dark-haired face.

If I crave some stunning shapes,

I came to the ideal place.


Tonight, ten thousand light the night,

about to throw a show to remember.

My beams are bursting at my seams,

as so much came for September.


Some flies feel too shy to shine.

Some cool their heat and dull their flames.

They may melt into a mushy mess.

Oh, their deaths are such a shame!


They salsa, shimmy, and sock hop.

They jete and jive in flocks of five.

Just like a jar of lemonade,

they make me feel more alive.


They glow a lovely lemon yellow;

light (up) the stage like buttercups.

Galloping like giddy goats,

unstrapped from their scratchy stirrups.


They flutter upwards, flushing fuchsia.

They curve into a cute sweetheart

I widely smiled at their grace and guile,

encouraged to create new art.


They soothe me with a smooth sea green,

and hop across the heady haze.

Flapping fins like gleeful guppies,

Casting hope for brighter days.


They then ignite an icy blue.

Freewheeling without a fuss.

Sparkling like fresh snowflakes,

their fancy flights bring me a buzz.


They careen into an ocean crest,

sucking in the concrete square.

They then swoop into a silver loop,

bestow a crown on my dark hair.


Once they wrapped around my head,

these bright bugs formed a sort of swarm.

I loved the bugs one thousand hugs,

they felt so welcoming and warm.


Although tomorrow will be busy,

How could I feel alarmed and stressed?

Cause with these friendly fireflies,

I just feel so calm and blessed.


The moon beamed down at me,

the poet in the parking lot.

Poised and pretty like a Queen,

in a right now private honey pot.


They healed my heart and helped me hope

As for next term, I could cope

In case anyone is wondering, some of this poem’s lines are inspired by the Fireflies song written by Owl City founder’s Adam Young released in 2010. Originally, I conceived it when I was resting for 15 minutes as part of a cognitive psychology experiment. Although I intended Starlight Square to be a fictional grassy place (inspired by Plaza Square but I thought Starlight sounded prettier), I recently learnt that Starlight square is a real place in Cambridge, America and was originally a concrete parking lot converted into a stage for performers and a marketplace, just like London’s Southbank. This means the poem is set in a real place. To find out more, here are the links to the music video and starlight square brochure: 

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