Issue Thirty-One - Winter 2018

Insect Peril

By Mercedes Lawry

I went down in the back where the listing shed
made a green hump. I was seeking blackberries in the mess.
The crows were disturbed or mocking
or minding their crow business with noise.
Wasps ribboned the brambles and I thought to take care.
Last week while pulling the finished daisies,
I felt a sharp sting and thought, damn,
I’ve intersected with a bee.
I swept at it and what fell to the ground
was no bee or wasp, but a grasshopper, vivid green
and clearly more aggressive that I’d have imagined.
I Googled – could they sting or bite?
Need I worry about allergic reactions?
Naturally there were lively firsthand accounts
and though experts claimed it was rare and unlikely,
I now knew that these prehistoric-looking insects
had not only laid waste to fields of grain
and might have mistaken me for a tasty leaf or blade of grass,
but might also harbor some old grudge against all the kids
who’d trapped them in glass bottles and forgot about them
when the next bright thing came along.

Copyright 2018 Lawry