Smashing A Spotted Lanternfly At The 35th Annual Fall Festival
On a clear, hall-of-fame day
somewhere between the Yo-Yo swing ride
and Crazy Mouse coaster
under the canopy of the carousel
while calliope music mixed with
a thousand bustling patrons and peddlers,
I found myself in the shade on a bench
eating flash frozen ice cream pebbles
when an unmistakably stylish bug landed at my feet.
Just then, The Swinging Squares took to The Midway Stage.
Women dressed in five-tiered, earth-toned calico skirts
began to twirl as their partners circled them round.
Bright red petticoats flashed.
With deadly intent, I stomped the invasive pest
with the toe of my sneaker.
I felt satisfied, even, one might say, good.
I had killed to protect the harvest,
and I would do it again.
About the Author: A native of Pennsylvania, Lara Dolphin is an attorney, nurse, wife and mom of four amazing kids. Her first chapbook, In Search Of The Wondrous Whole, was published by Alien Buddha Press. Her most recent chapbook, Chronicle Of Lost Moments, is available from Dancing Girl Press.
Image Credit: Arthur Rothstein “Brownsville, Texas. Carnival ride” (1942) The Library of Congress
I turned the page of the old book
and was ready to read the end
of the chapter. That’s when I
noticed a pimpling of the pulp.
Booklice had moved in, bumping
up against passages, as foreign
as phrases I’d have to look up or
like marginalia by some other hand.
The tiny reduced-wing wildlife,
relegated to domesticated booklife,
was cream-colored like the pages
it had chosen for wordly habitation,
and I also couldn’t help but think
about how the page’s punctuation
—the bug wasn’t much bigger
than a comma but appeared shaped
more like an exclamation point—
had decided to move around, how
small symbols can shift meanings
of the sentences resting on the page.
For this interloper, this interjection
instinctively brushed off, I figured
it would take flight as the smallest
and plainest of angels wish to do.
About the Author: Ronnie Sirmans is an Atlanta print newspaper digital editor whose poems have appeared in Tar River Poetry, Deep South Magazine, Atlanta Review, The American Journal of Poetry, Fathom, and elsewhere.