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"Shine On Little Glow Worm, Glimmer, Glimmer ..."

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

One of my favourite things at the cottage, and I have lots of favourites, is the firefly - something I never get to see in the city! Next to our cottage, we have an area that's full of wildflowers and long grasses and at night it's aglow with fireflies - I can sit and just watch them for hours in the dark.

Did you know that:

- A firefly is neither a fly, nor a bug. Rather, it is a beetle that belongs to Lampyridae family,
- that besides fireflies, they are also called lightening bugs & glow worms,
- that there are over 2000 species of firefly,
- that they can be found throughout the whole world except for Antartica, in moist habitats, such as swampy areas, fields, lawns and at the edges of woods or streams,
- that they produce light for three reasons - attracting mates, warning predators and telling other fireflies of danger,
- that both the male and female firefly glow. However, their rhythmic flashing patterns depend upon the sex and the species,
- that they don't bite, nor do they have pincers,
- that a firefly spends most of its lifespan as a larva. In the adult form, it survives for a very short span,
- that female fireflies lay their eggs in the soil and even the latter are reported to glow in the dark,
- that its light organs are located under the abdomen. When a firefly breathes in oxygen and combines it with luciferin, a substance present inside its special cells, the result is production of light, which has almost no heat,
- the firefly turns on its light when flying upward, at intervals of about 5.8 seconds and that the light turns off when they coast downward,
-and, that the Chinese thought these twinkling little creatures came from burning grass,
- that a European legend warned that if a lightning bug flew in the window, someone was going to die (yikes!),
- that Aztecs used the term firefly metaphorically, meaning a spark of knowledge in a world of ignorance or darkness (I really like that one!),
- that American Indians collected lightning bugs and smeared
them as decorations on their faces and chest (poor little guys!!)

I didn't - fascinating, eh!!!

Came across this classic performance from 1975 of Bette Midler & The Mills Brothers singing The Glow Worm at

(Original words by Lilla Cayley Robinson, modern words by Johnny Mercer and Music by Paul Lincke)

Shine little glow-worm, glimmer, glimmer
Shine little glow-worm, glimmer, glimmer
Lead us lest too far we wander
Love's sweet voice is callin' yonder
Shine little glow-worm, glimmer, glimmer
Hey, there don't get dimmer, dimmer
Light the path below, above
And lead us on to love

Glow little glow-worm, fly of fire
Glow like an incandescent wire
Glow for the female of the species
Turn on the AC and the DC
This night could use a little brightnin'
Light up you little ol' bug of lightnin'
When you gotta glow, you gotta glow
Glow little glow-worm, glow

Glow little glow-worm, glow and glimmer
Swim through the sea of night, little swimmer
Thou aeronautical boll weevil
Illuminate yon woods primeval
See how the shadows deep and darken
You and your chick should get to sparkin'
I got a gal that I love so
Glow little glow-worm, glow

Glow little glow-worm, turn the key on
You are equipped with taillight neon
You got a cute vest-pocket *Mazda*
Which you can make both slow and faster
I don't know who you took the shine to
Or who you're out to make a sign to
I got a gal that I love so
Glow little glow-worm, glow
Glow little glow-worm, glow
Glow little glow-worm, glow
Glow little glow-worm, glow

I can remember my parents and grandparents singing this when I was young. Ahhhh, the memories!!!

"Before, beside us, and above The firefly lights his lamp of love."
~ Bishop Reginald Heber

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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    We taught our three year old granddaughter how to catch fireflies this year and she does better at it than we do!!!
    2824 days ago
    Brings back childhood memories of chasing fireflies with my beloved brother. emoticon
    2854 days ago
  • 46SHADOW
    i love fireflys!
    2855 days ago
    Love it! My first dance solo was to Glow little Glow Worm emoticon
    2855 days ago
    I love fireflies and haven't seen them in years and years (you don't get them in the desert). But as a child, I loved cupping them in my hands and watching them glow...no wonder I loved Tinkerbell.
    Thanks for all the info...very interesting indeed.
    2855 days ago
    We use to make "glow in the dark" diamond rings out of 'em! LOL!

    But I love Bette Midler. Haven't heard too much about her lately, I know she is in her early sixties.

    But thank you for all the info. That was so interesting! emoticon
    2855 days ago
  • DEE107
    Me too thanks for sharing
    2855 days ago
    I remember collecting lightening bugs as a little girl. I didn't know all that information about fireflys. Thank you.
    2855 days ago
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