The moon

‘Clonk Clonk’ (From The Scorpion God)

Typically in literature, the moon is associated with women, which makes it an important symbol in ‘Clonk Clonk’. The moon is known as the ‘Sky Woman’ and its shape is linked to maternity – a full moon sees her ‘heavy with child’. The light of the moon allows the men, and the animals to hunt at night, and particularly for the women in this matriarchal society, allows them to perform their ceremonies.

The women are much more intelligent than the men and they are able to predict the phases of the moon: ‘Palm knew, and the women with her, what shape the Sky Woman would be in when she rose’ (115). The men have no idea what the women do in the moonlight: ‘unguessable things occupied the girls and the mothers’ (129) and Chimp/Charging Elephant accidentally stumbles into one of their moonlit ceremonies. Golding’s descriptions of the moon are lovely.

‘The Sky Woman was halfway down her tree, yet so bright was she that she had the sky to herself, save for one icy sparkle of light above the mountains where the sunset had been (129)’