Ode to a Cockroach
I can see you skittering through my soul.
I can see blood pulse through your kidney corpse.
Dripping live cells into some fertile hole
For upon human life your presence torques
Blood pressured fear. And the multitude
Abandon city and sleep on sheets clean.
You sit in your puddle of Raid and laugh
And will roll on your back in buoyant mood.
Though we may have killed you, our joy is lean
And your joy is our fear inspired staph.
Your sleek arms move like sheets in the wind
Casting into my sea of dirty dishes
For pearls whose value to me has dampened.
While I sit on the pot, mind full of wishes
Denied when you skirt cross kitchen tiles
(Your legs tickling my mind) to vanish
Into the cracks of my kitchen cupboard.
I hack in shame at the dirty dish piles
While wastes still within, I itch to banish
From Myself. You . . .you crave the waste I hoard.
You glisten in definition my roach.
That soul-shuttering tail poorly covers
The seething, leg blackened filth you poach.
And look, there your lasso of filth hovers
In my dirty drawer and apple core floor.
But is your presence in this room my fault?
Oh no! Your loathsome aura would not stay
If neighborhood spike didn’t aptly gore
The shield, the siphon, oh that private vault
Of clean locales that keep you far away.
Some humans consider me inhuman
To live in the dead city in self-stench
And offer you life where their life began.
I work long days, a subservient wench
To retreat in anger and hate, within
Four walls of a home that I afford,
I know how it feels to be a memory—
To remind us of secrets that have been,
The wastes within, feared like dominions sword.
Ah to be blamed for human history!
Beneath this room you dance in furtive zone
Amid the roots of the eternal earth
Where wastes boil and meat decays from bone,
Where death creates life through divine rebirth.
And while the world above soaks like a sponge
In clean chemicals, our mad creation,
You thrive on the falsehood of trickle down
And train to survive in evolving grunge.
You are the world’s wildest elation:
The locus of life, the imposing frown.
I float beneath the fish line of treasure
The sweet pastry baited just out of reach
While I dangle before others measure
Whose septic social contract I breach.
I sense nature’s recourse beneath me
And mourn my lonely life hanging here.
I clutch my Raid, fear your presence whole
Yet long to grasp the life I see,
To hold that flame of human hate and fear:
Ah but are you immortal to my soul?