stumps and bugs


what’ll you have: roly poly and osage orange?
ant and cottonwood? beetle and oak?

be both the stump and the bug,
the earth and the light

be the world you’ve hidden under,
be the separate vulnerable ones

be the truth you’ve claimed as solid,
be the creature busy to stay under it

choose your bug, your insect:
the kind that like to live in dark places

choose your wood, your fallen tree:
at least a foot in diameter,
cut to an eighteen inch high hunk

be the keeper of both.

be hidden long enough
to have set up camp,
tunneled and deposited eggs:
stake claim on the future

be strong enough
to move the stump,
pulling dirt and stringy roots with it,
light finding the hidden place

be brave enough
to survive as a bug scattering:
roly poly with legs tucked under,
ants more upright, beetles scurrying sideways

be the scent of the natural order of things,
the leaf tucked under the stump:
half dirt, half waiting

be the silent panic,
the soundless frantic circling of being exposed

be the natural consequence
of lifting the heaviness of a crumbling truth

be the keeper of the stump:
notice how easily it split when moved, open and decayed.

be the keeper of the bugs:
notice their world destroyed with no where to hide.

whisper i’m sorry and you’re welcome in a magical at-the-same-time way

the future continues, probable ones splayed out

in the facts of cracked stumps and homeless bugs


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