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Unread 02-25-2021, 03:39 PM
Matt Q Matt Q is online now
Join Date: May 2013
Location: England, UK
Posts: 3,991
Default #snailpoem

Biopic with cute snail

In the movie of my life, I am to be played by Neverita Didyma,
the bladder moon snail, a predatory marine gastropod

found in the Yellow Sea. Though not moon-shaped myself,
I am a well-rounded individual, so I am quite untroubled

at being played by a female. In interviews, I praise her talents
which are unknown to me: she is so obscure that she barely merits

her own Wikipedia page. Others are not so gracious.
Golbaengi-muchim, a.k.a. moon-snail salad, a Korean dish

rejected for the role, is furious, and circulates internet memes:
anime clips of Neverita that flash the caption: “I’d neverita”,

the irony of this, somehow lost on him. I spring chivalrously
to her defence—though my attempts to get #idedita trending

are perhaps misjudged. A carnivore herself, she squirms nervously
in my presence. Twitter spats escalate and soon we are at war

with the Korean food industry. United by shared adversity,
Neverita and I begin to bond. Then inevitably it happens:

she bats her eyestalks, and I slide over. She leaks
a grainy shell-less sex-tape and becomes briefly famous,

whereas the tabloids slate me as a bottom-feeder.
The film’s backers, already cracking under the pressure

from the Korean Food industry, sense a scandal.
The movie is cancelled and I slip back into obscurity,

which, appropriately enough, is the story of my life.

S6L2 "alongside the caption" -> "emblazoned with the words"

S6L2 "photos of Neverita" -> "anime clips of Neverita"; "emblazoned with the words" -> "that flash the caption"

Last edited by Matt Q; 03-15-2021 at 09:50 AM.
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Unread 02-26-2021, 10:04 AM
David Callin David Callin is offline
Join Date: Jun 2014
Location: Ellan Vannin
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Wow. Where on earth did this come from, Matt? It seems to me inspired, kept buoyant - somehow - by its own mad logic, which is maintained throughout, as though it came from another universe quite outside our own, with different laws from those that apply here but which it observes perfectly.

I can only goggle at it - like Neverita herself, perhaps - admiringly.

Is this a thing in itself, or will there be - have there been - others? It is rich and strange indeed.

If in fact the poem can be unlocked as a brilliant allegory, then apologies - I have missed it completely.


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Unread 02-26-2021, 01:22 PM
Jane Crowson's Avatar
Jane Crowson Jane Crowson is online now
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Posts: 395

Hi Matt,

I really like this - it’s, fun, clever & playful. It blends fact and fiction beautifully - almost despite myself I’m pulled into the narrative.

I also enjoy the undertones of discussion about the power/how knowledge and popularity is constructed on social media.

Small potential points

In L6, talents / which are unknown to me doesn’t feel grammatically correct - do you need to consider putting a comma after talents, or placing ‘which are…’ in parenthesis?

I think that the move from moon-snail to a type of moon-snail salad (from animal to dish) work okay, and of course it’s nonsense anyway, but animating a different type of (edible) snail rather than switching to a recipe-name might make more internal sense in the context of the poem’s other sense-making?

Also, of course, the dish is made of the snail itself (unless it’s a different type of moon snail), so there’s another sense-gap (the snail and the dead snail dissing each other doesn’t make quite as much nonsense/sense as a snail and another type of live snail, maybe).

I think too I’d consider reworking the image and the caption. This doesn’t read like an internet meme to me. It’s the word-choice of ‘caption’ I think. That implies a smallish piece of explanatory text under a photo, whereas memes might more readily spring to mind video content etc. What you describe to me in that line is flickr, not tik-tok or youtube.

There’s also possibly some further wordplay in the snail name (Did y neverita?) that you could mine if you wanted to. And although I’m not sure it would work, if you wanted to up the social media ante you could also incorporate some @’s along the line.

I’m not sure ‘at war’ helps the social media angle either. Maybe consider another hashtag ‘soon we are #streetfight’ or something like it (I’m not going to research negative hashtags on twitter because I don’t want to get embroiled in twitter hate because of your snail poem, but there must be some out there)

I love the snail-sex bits. They’re very funny. Again, if you could think of way to incorporate an @ for the film’s backers ins one way it might add to this.

I’m not sure if you need the ‘appropriately enough’. I’d trim the last line to ‘the story of my life’.

#snailpoem is a great title, btw. It'll be trending tomorrow, I bet.

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Unread 02-27-2021, 04:17 AM
Matt Q Matt Q is online now
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David and Sarah,

Thanks for your comments. I'm glad you both liked it.


I'm calling it absurdism, but if someone does find a brilliant allegory though, I won't complain.


I've added the comma to S3, thanks for flagging that up.

With "meme" I'm thinking of a photograph with some text added. Specifically an image of Neverita with the words "I'd neverita" emblazoned across it. Are you saying that the use of the word "caption" suggests something other than this, or that the photo-with-text meme is so passé that it's no longer considered a meme as everything's animated these days?

Useful to know that moon-snail salad isn't working for you. I liked that he is a dish (dishy). Also I was working from Neverita's very sparse Wikipedia page and Golbaengi-muchim was pretty much the only thing mentioned -- and I liked the absurdity of it. The same-species thing didn't bother me. I mean, why shouldn't a snail salad and a live snail audition for the same role in a film, and the one that loses out get jealous?


Last edited by Matt Q; 02-27-2021 at 05:28 AM.
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Unread 02-27-2021, 01:51 PM
Jane Crowson's Avatar
Jane Crowson Jane Crowson is online now
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Posts: 395

Matt -

So, I think of caption as something under/beside a photo rather than the meme text overlays/text layers in photoshop. But that will probably because I'm also thinking about image-music-text and photoshop layers which are all about my specific context so it probably doesn't matter.
Although, having said that, in simple graphics packages designed to support people easily putting text on images, the text is called 'text', not 'caption'. Adding a caption is a different thing.

I googled 'caption' & I get the kind of thing you want, though, and some fascinating suggestions, including these:
  • I am ME that is my power.
  • I'm a direct descendant from awesomeness.
  • never lose. Either I win or I learn.
  • I will win, not immediately but definitely.

Which one to choose?

Perhaps, if you're wedded to captions, consider adding a modifier so you lose the more formal meaning of captions. Maybe 'cool captions'. Or 'cute caption'.

Snail fight - But it's the same snail in the salad! They're both arguing over the part (one live, one dead). It's like 'sliding doors' only with more mucus and with less Gwyneth Paltrow.

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Unread 03-02-2021, 04:22 AM
Matt Q Matt Q is online now
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Location: England, UK
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Thanks for coming back and clarifying, Sarah. "Caption" seemed like the right word to me, but it's useful to know it threw you off. I'm not especially wedded to it though. Maybe I should change the word "alongside" which suggests the caption isn't placed on the image -- though meme captions are often above or below a photo rather than on it -- and/or maybe I can just call it "text" or "words". I'll be interested to see if it confuses others.

thanks again,


Last edited by Matt Q; 03-02-2021 at 04:43 AM.
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