Once upon a time, the story goes, cicadas were human beings, before the birth of the Muses.  When the Muses were born and song came into being, some of these creatures were so struck by the pleasure of it that they sang and sang, forgot to eat and drink, and died before they knew it.  From them the race of cicadas arose, and they and they have this special privilege from the Muses: from the time they are born they need no nourishment, they just sing continually without eating or drinking until they die… (Sokratic Dialogues 259b-c)
—  Anne Carson, Eros the Bitter, (Dalkey Archive Press, 2000) pg. 139
ancient greek cicada epithets

ἀναιμόσαρκος (anaimosarkos), with bloodless flesh
ἡλιομανής (hēliomanēs), sun-mad, mad for love of the sun
ἠχέτης (ēchetēs), clear-sounding, musical, shrill; chirping
λακέτας (laketas), chirper
λιγυπτέρυγος (ligupterugos), chirping with the wings
μελεσίπτερος (melesipteros), singing with its wings
μεσημβρινός (mesēmbrinos), belonging to noon

The Signs As: Summery Things
  • ARIES: lightning bugs and cicadas
  • TAURUS: climbing trees
  • GEMINI: that first run into the freezing cold water
  • CANCER: the way the sun feels when it hits your face
  • LEO: when it's too hot to do anything so you sit inside with the A/C up and fans on
  • VIRGO: no school!
  • LIBRA: sweet tea and lemonade
  • SCORPIO: late nights and fireworks
  • SAGITTARIUS: amusement parks and state fairs
  • CAPRICORN: camping out and staring at the stars
  • AQUARIUS: how heavenly a cool breeze feels on your skin
  • PISCES: the refreshing tingle of aloe on sunburnt skin

People who live through an outbreak of 17 year cicadas have a truly unique life experience. They will tell you that it’s like a plague out of the old testament. I remember it happened my sophomore year of college.

Although I’m technically an extrovert, I get nervous around people until I get comfortable with them and sometimes psych myself out about going to social events. So what I’m saying is, I’m not really a social butterfly.

I’m a social cicada. You don’t see much of me for years and then all of a sudden, I’m everywhere and super loud and annoying. 👌