Domain of the Pink

Stuff you probably don't want to know


OK, so I could tell you all about myself, what I like and so on, but that would be pointless, dull and unchallenging.

When did I ever let that stop me? Well, never, I admit, but there's a first time for everything.

So, instead here's one of my poems, this particular item having been created back in 1996 when I was a Uni First Year, and had a slightly healthier (read: lower) level of cynicism and an inversely proportional amount of creativity, now sadly demised.

For those who like a challenge, not only does it tell the well-read who a favourite author of mine is, it also gives you an idea of my politics, sense of humour, love of comic verse, and (bargain) hints at my original cynicism level, by which you can calculate my current mind state.

Natural selection, Or: The trials of life.

In a country far away,
Where forests aren't at all like ours
But moist and hot and filled with life,
There grow some quite unusual flowers.
They're tall and thin and tulip-like,
They tower above the ferny fronds
And rain collects inside in pools
Creating separate little ponds.

Inside one flower live tiny crabs
And here they live until they die
And, in between, raise families,
And all they ever see is sky.
Because they live so much alone,
And as the petals are so tall,
They cannot see the outside world
And don't believe in it at all.

In fact, most think (as good crabs should)
That all there is outside their pool
Is Sky, where all the insects live,
(For this is what they're taught at school).
But some crabs claim the Wood exists
As sometimes, when the wind is right,
A leaf will drift into their pond
And start a philosophic fight.

You see, general consensus is
That 'what you see is what you get',
So flower and sky is all there is -
They tend to get a bit upset
When younger crabs say "that's not true!
If there are leaves there must be trees."
And then prove mathematically
That there are other flowers like these.

The elders say "The Great God Zog
Has sent this leaf down from his cloud
To test our faith." and mumble that
"Such lies should never be allowed".
So in their minute universe,
Most never wonder if to stay
So trapped is such a good idea.
At least, that is, until today.

A certain crab (who shan't be named
As that may cause embarrassment)
Has made himself unpopular
Because, this morning, when he went
Out hunting for his evening meal
(They catch bugs who, unluckily
Fall into their steep-sided home,
And then they cook them for their tea)

The crab was rather shocked to meet
An insect from a neighbouring tree
Who used to hover 'round this flower
And thus spoke crab quite fluently
This bug told him about the world
And of a bird it sometimes sees
Whose lengthy beak it has evolved
To reach inside such flowers as these.

Concerned by this impending doom,
And knowing that he must be quick,
Crab told the elders straight away -
They said he was a heretic.
So he and all his family
Were flung outside their native place
And, landing in a pond below,
Began to propagate their race.

But fate, who always likes a joke,
Was not content to let things be
And pointed out these goings on
To Long-Beaked Bird in Nearby Tree.
She saw the errant little crab
And relatives, as they fell by,
And 'though her brain was very small
She was aware that crabs can't fly.

She saw the flower up above
And suddenly she understood,
Then swiftly flew up to that plant
And ate the crabs - because she could.
Thus were the naïve crabs devoured
While those who questioned prosper still.
I'm sure that there's a moral here,
But I'll ignore it if you will.

(c) rachel callen, december 1996

If you liked that, you can see a rather more painful piece of my poetry in the Post's Christmas Comp at I hope you voted for me!!!

Stuff you may want to know, if you're really nosey

OK, it's been suggested that actually my poem doesn't give clues on my age, vital stats, hobbies and so forth, so for all you really nosey people out there, here's my CV.

I was the 23-year-old Internet Editor/Journalist for a small ebusiness website based in Carnaby Street, London (That's England, for all Americans and aliens out there) until I packed it all in to travel the world.

I'm travelling for nine months as of March 2001, so if anyone from Thailand, Malaysia, Bali, Australia (East Coast), New Zealand, Hawaii, Vancouver or Los Angeles area (or anyone who knows them well) wants to extend the hand of friendship and offer me advice on where to stay, what to see and so on, I'd be eternally grateful! Gosh, what a long sentence.

I'm a Cardiff Uni Alumnus (twice! - does that make me Alumni?), first due to a first class Literature degree (with side modules of medieval Norse, medieval English and Latin - I'm a sucker for punishment) and secondly with a postgrad diploma in magazine journalism from CJS. Cardiff rocks, it must be said. All Cardiff Uni/Tafarn/CJS/Gair Rhydd/Clwb Ifor Bach-worshipping statements are welcome!!

In my free time I like slashing at people with sharp pieces of metal (or prodding them with bits of metal with rubber buttons on the end - whatever's your weapon), music, latin dancing, reading and all the usual leisure pursits. Oh, and shopping O:-)...

In H2G2 I'm a member of the Choral Society (how do I get a badge on my page?) and the Musician's Guild. But I'm still pretty new here because I don't get much time to participate - hopefully over Christmas I'll really start to feel at home here!

I'm also the Patron Saint of Artistically Arranged Foliage, so please do feel to worship me on my saint's day, which is the 31st of February. However, I'm afraid I'm a bit of a lax Saint, and those wanting miracles in the near future should probably go elsewhere.

I'm also the Keeper of the Shrubbery, but I guess you knew that already. I keep it really nice.

Help Please! I know my homepage is unexciting next to most people's, so if anyone can give me any tips on how to make it more'd be nice, s'all.

Ooh...and I'm a member of G.A.S...

..And the H2G2 Vegetarian Society

For my guide entries, look left. Not much there yet. Hmmm...better get to work. I also had a hand in Home-made Christmas Presents, where I offloaded my wisdom on livening up dull prezzies and making hampers. And yes, it was my Grandad.


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The Pink Dandelion (Taraxacum non-officinale) - Keeper of the Shrubbery

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