Sep/Oct 2016 • Vol. XXXVIII No. 5 PoetrySeptember 1, 2016 |

On the Beauty of Science

A colleague at my hospital has won a major prize for seminal research into the role of lipid bodies in the eosinophil. How I once loved the eosinophil, its nucleus contorted, cytoplasm flecked bright red. Of course, I wondered at its function, why it self-destructed on encountering some allergen or parasitic egg, how it killed by dying. Now we know so much that joy in the mysterious seems quaint. Its valentine to us undone by guile, the blushing eosinophil explained: embarrassed by its smallness, or enraged that all its selflessness should be betrayed.

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