I came across the photo above on NASA's Cities at Night website trying to get inspiration for my first blog post while having nothing to do at work. Since I live right in the white blotchy gut of this creature called Tokyo, I went directly for link to this image. It says on the their website that Tokyo, and other Japanese cities, have an unusual greenish glow. European and American cities have an orangish glow. This is apparently due to the type of lighting. The majority of Tokyo, save for the newer orangie parts, use mercury vapor lamps instead of sodium vapor ones.
I cannot help but imagine Tokyo as a sort of electicity-feeding tentacled creature hugging, or repelled by, the dark cold waters of Tokyo Bay. It could be just taking a centuries-long drink. The rivers meandering through its amoebic body could very well be multiple esophagi taking in much needed moisture and murky nutrients. The bright white nodal center could be the massive neural network several stomachs or both; the various ports its mandibles, teeth, fangs, claws, or pincers.
Whatever you or I imagine, it is definitely not just a mass of concrete and glass bocks criss-crossed with asphalt and steel. This illuminated beast is these materials, but much, much more.