|Arsenic Lobster poetry journal||
O daddy long legs in the orchids and wisteria,
how you make my cock-cells swell!
O caterpillar cubs folded in the fern petals,
you are lovely as shoulders tied with ribbons
and valentine nettles!
That’s what she slipped into my ear
when I told her my life was ruined by insects.
“They said they liked me,
but my cricket kept farting
when girls came near.”
She said she could see them
doing pirouettes in my eyeballs,
my bugs waving bouquets of hearts-on-a-stem.
She asked if she could borrow one
after it reached the temperature
of a blood blossom or a yellow jacket’s rose
that the itchy summer remembered well.
I thought she was being romantic.
but when they made human faces at her
and began yodeling “Maneater”
she pointed to all the moles
on my body that were fed
and mourned like something recalcitrant
and repeated only in song
I’m turning off my nipples now
and swatted my body from the bed,
two birthmarks, three
birthmarks or more
from the exaggerated, deep white bed.
About Rob Cook