Thursday, April 08, 2010

A News Sonnet A Day for April 2010: 8

I've set myself a goal for National Poetry Month this year: Compose a sonnet based on a science-themed news story each day.

Today's installment takes its cue from "Gut bacteria in Japanese people borrowed sushi-digesting genes from ocean bacteria" by Ed Yong in Discover.

Gut Instinct

Bacteria will sometimes share a gene
That fosters their ability to thrive.
One day land lubber borrowed from marine
The means to use raw seaweed to survive.

It happened in a warm digestive tract.
Zobellia and B.plebeius met
Over a bite of sushi. And the fact
That nori wasn't cooked, far from a threat,

Made good nutrition even more a breeze
And changed intestine flora, don't know when --
Enabling the bowels of Japanese
To best the gut of an American.

Passed down, much like the tales of samurai,
They munch where algae carbohydrates lie.

Elissa Malcohn's Deviations and Other Journeys
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