Check out our latest issue of Lyceum: Spring 2021, Volume VI

Science And…


By Bella Hatkoff


How does one cell (a fertilized egg) turn into a fully functioning organism? That’s the million-dollar question that gets Dr. Petersen out of bed every day… 


Facing Medusa by Liv Kane ; Painting by Katarina Yepez

One thousand apologies to my great-grandfather and the generations of fishermen I come from. I want to be an astronaut. In the summer of 2019, a box jellyfish, known colloquially as the seawasp, stung the girl’s left ankle. She had just resurfaced after a night dive and was stargazing, lying on her back and imagining the worlds miles above and below her. She’d turned the light attached to her gear off, remembering that all sorts of bioluminescent organisms fall for flashlights, when she heard another diver shout. She swam over, suddenly overcome by a weighty fear in the bottom of her abdomen. Something’s gonna eat me tonight. …


by Katherine Crawford 

E. coli doesn’t have a memory. It adapts, registers changes, gets used to its new normal. Methylation pathways, the most  rudimentary brain.  

I feel like my memory is fading. What was the world like before? Before I had to put on a mask to walk to the bathroom?  Before I lost a year with my friends? Before the closest intimacy was sharing a breath? 

My dog went blind. She never saw us wear masks. Now, as we carry her frail body along the sidewalks she used to race  down, what does she remember? After a year of not seeing, her nose still runs into chairs we haven’t moved. She’s lost in  her own house. How much of my face does she see in her mind when I arrive home?  

We can adapt to anything. 11,869 Americans died from the new normal this week. Lower than the week before. Like E.  coli, and despite my own will, I’m adapting.