Today I go where the bugs go, and I leave the spiny spider alone. I follow the molding like the morning sheen across a petal and maneuver between the red dead bodies. We don’t carry our dead, so they accumulate. A flash of rain in the afternoon is a signature of our landscape, where pollen-powdered leaves at noon drip pollen puddles soon after. Our feet slosh with the bunch and stretch of a caterpillar’s walk, and as we fall, our limbs bleed into the walls. As of now, I am lucky, simply stuck in a drop.
Today I go where the bugs go, or I try to, at least. This wiry one, my self-appointed guide, decides to walk me home. My bubble burst, his awkward steps crowd a smidgen closer. I don’t know where the bugs go or, much less, why. Dead bodies at varied stages of decay forbid us to continue. Some buried under still-warm bodies, some wriggling under cold stiffs. With no word from the others, our pasts will surely find us.
Today I go where the wiry spider goes, and like him, I amble briskly. His legs and eyes outnumber mine—impressive, I suppose. Why the others don’t see it, I don’t know. Why he has chosen me, I only speculate. Today, I go where the wiry spider goes, and up ahead, I see home: a spectacle of bugs suspended in the sky.
Heather Nagami is a Kundiman fellow and the author of Hostile (Chax Press). Her poems have recently appeared in Zocalo Magazine and Poetry & Prose for the Phoenix Art Museum. She was a finalist for the 2015 Rita Dove Poetry Prize. Visit Heather at www.heathernagami.com.