(urth) fifth head owlet- wolf‏

David Stockhoff dstockhoff at verizon.net
Fri Apr 12 06:16:43 PDT 2013

On 4/12/2013 8:01 AM, Lee Berman wrote:
>> Marc Aramini- If one is not in favor of the maggots explanation,
>> rue d'asticot might perhaps be another allusion to a "mythical street"
>> in London named Grub Street. Which was renamed Milton Street and might
>> then jive doubly with that hell imagery of 666 saltimbaque, but I still
>> like the maggots.
> Your mind works in amazing ways to see these connections. I am tempted to
> think ascribing so much meaning to street names might be stretching credibility
> of understanding Wolfe's intentions, then I remember Iubar St. in BotNS, Sun
> Street in Long Sun and other examples and I have to conclude, as usual, that
> Marc might be right.
> So "asticot" means maggot, hm. Goes along with the general sense of decay we
> get in 5HoC. Seems to thematically jibe with the weirdness of Apheta refering
> to herself and her kind as the larvae of the Hierarchs.
> Just made me think of Hethor's slug which is pretty grub/larva like. Any chance
> Wolfe intended us to think it could metamorphosize into a very large, winged being?
> Also, we have Mother Pyrexia who was said to resemble one of the creatures you'd
> find in rotten wood, after she'd been sealed into her house for a while (though
> that might rather be a reference to a salamander).
I love the joke of grubs being replaced (gentrified!) by Milton. As far 
as I can tell no one knows why, but the name does seem to come from the 
word for "larva." Talk about an upgrade.

There's no question that Wolfe is fascinated by evolution-as-design. But 
it's not enough to ooh and ah over eyeballs: evolution is systemic 
change, and parasites/detritivores/bacteria are all part of the system.

I almost mentioned Apheta myself. Larvae are a key concept, since they 
indicate change/immaturity/nonspecialization/potential.

I still don't understand the Pyrexia reference, but fire/heat is 
certainly involved in the interpretation since the word means "fever."

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