Some Very Curious Plants

My Grandpa grew giant squash,
feeding them multi-grade engine oil.

They loomed in the dusk, tendrils
coiled like insulated cables.

People came from far away, from
overseas, to gawp at the prodigies –

a small cult sprang up around
Grandpa’s magic, an eco-craze.

As a kid, I would spy on him
anointing long frozen beds

with gloopy muck, his fingers
dextrous calloused sticks.

It gave me dreams of liquorice
like wire looped around my teeth;

on waking – just for a moment –
it was impossible to speak.


from From The Wonder Book of Would You Believe It? (Mariscat, 2016), © Jane McKie 2016, used by permission of the author

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Recordings

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1Some Very Curious Plants

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2The Plant’s Chemical Laboratory I & II

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3The Strength of Plants

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4Curious Ways of Breathing

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5Heat that Defies Imagination

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6Not Like Us

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7Old Inhabitants of Our Home

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8Strange Ears and What They Hear

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9An Ant’s Strange Guest

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10Creatures That Emit ‘Cold’ Light

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11A White City Underground

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12Splendours of the Past

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13A City of Floating Houses

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14How Strange This Seems

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15Nightmare Denizens of an Unexplored World

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16How They Move

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17The Inland Lighthouse

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18Every Town Creates Its Saint

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19Garden of Bedsteads

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20We Are All Wild Beasts

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21A Feral Child Inside

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22The Underground Observatory

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23Leper Window, St Mary the Virgin

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24Viking Horse-bone Ice Skates

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25Encounter in the Ice Hotel

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26Lake above the Clouds

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27The Wind in the Mountains

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28We Can’t Escape the Fact That We’re Not Enough for Each Other

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29Archipelago

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30The Little Magisterium

31Midsummer

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32Winter Bread

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33Scottish Voodoo

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34Rannoch

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35Tentsmuir Point

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36The Zephyr Aunts

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37Gift from Queenie, May She Rest in Peace

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38The Boy Who Found Fear

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39Sunrise over Lunan Bay

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40The Specious Present

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411976 Kodak

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