22 April 2010

Uncollected McIntyre: Mars on Hogs

Five weeks after publishing "The Evolution of the Hog", James McIntyre returned to the pages of the Globe with this mysterious, seemingly untitled poem. His inspiration – "signals sent to us from Mars" – escaped the attention of the newspaper. I've been unable to find even one account of these historic messages from the red planet.

Eighteen hundred and ninety-four, in which this poem was written, is remembered by aresologists as the year in which Percival Lowell studied and sketched the canals of Mars. Could it be that the Cheese Poet was just a tad confused? Whatever the answer, Mars provided an opportunity to touch upon the First Sino-Japanese War, then in its first month, before turning yet again to the ravenous hog.

The Globe, 15 September 1894


  1. I started writing this comment to suavely explain the origins of McIntyre's "Mars signals", but then research showed that I was thinking of the MOON Hoax, which happened 59 years too early to have been his inspiraton. So, really, I have no idea what I'm talking about.

    And the verification words is "weeni". Indeed I am.

  2. It wouldn't be the first time McIntyre was confused. He wrote a poem about a boy falling in a mill stream and drowning (dead) but really the child survived.

  3. JRSM, how well I remember studying those drawings from the Moon Hoax as a child. The winged moon women were topless!

    Anonymous, would o be referring to McIntyre's "A Providential Escape"? Probably not - if memory serves the child survived, both on paper and in real life. Must say, though, the facts around the event described are confusing. The Ingersoll Library blog has a very interesting piece on it all.