Monday – Beetles
An Amazing, Alliterative, Incredible Insect Invasion
Big buzzing bees blagged my bananas
Hornets hid half of my ham
Six scary spiders scoffed my spicy sausages
Four flies filched my fruit flan
Ants ate all my apples (as always)
Crazed crickets crunched my carrot crisps
Beetles bit bits of my brown bread
Chiggers cheerfully chewed my chips
While wiggly worms whipped my Wotsits
Roaches removed and ran away with my rolls
Many maggots munched my mango, Mum
Twenty-two tiny ticks took my toast
That perfect picnic I precisely planned
A wonderful one-off occasion
Was decimated, demolished and destroyed
By an amazing, alliterative, incredible insect invasion
You think me superficial
but a surface is where
two worlds collide. Yes,
I look on the bright side
but my other half
eyes the depths.
You see stillness
but I’m on edge:
disturb me & I’ll scatter
like spilt quicksilver,
as a charged particle
in a bubble chamber.
Green Tiger Beetle
In a marram forest sweetened by lilac trumpets
of shore convolvulus, a tiny sun-crazed tiger
lies in wait, coiled as a steel spring.
With the sky as sharp as a blade,
in full lustre, this gaudy long-legged lady,
in sea-green dress and purple stockings
scans the dunes in fearful symmetry;
still as the breath of a foxglove
until fast as fire in parched moorland
she sprints after a spider, tears across crumbs
of silica and seashell. Six-legged slayer, she grabs,
decapitates, gorges with guillotine jaws.
-Annest Gwilym (from her collection: What The Owl Taught Me, 2020 and previously published in Poetry Space)
A Stag Beetle
Scratch decayed wood until it splinters. Hunt
these spikes for soft white wood swallow inside.
Indigestible I make a hard front,
swallow soil ready to throw back up outside.
Create a smooth cover, give myself horns,
six legs, two wings all soft and white. Don’t know
how I know how, where, and what shapes to form,
nor what light is, till lust makes me go,
shift this bulk, these wings buzz into hot bright.
There can be a few in battle for her.
My heavy horns twist, locked in long fight
to straddle her. Must turn them all over.
Hungered in dark most of my life.
Brief lusty flight, fight and sex in the light
-Paul Brookes (from The Insect Sonnets First published in David O’Nan’s Fevers of The Mind)