Caterpillar Army


Mother’s lips meet gravel blackened knees and bug stung toes,

while mice host tea parties in Father’s beard.

Dandelion lovers taunt Mother.

Almond whites surrender from the clothesline.

She’s spent too much time building rivers in the sky

and homes underground.

Father protects a nest of blue eggs from storm,

convinced life is worth rescue.


Children stab with window frames,

flower shaped scars don’t belong on soft skin.

Rattled, caged and confused,

Mother and sunflowers vanish.

Chalked lines on sidewalk fade with rain,

avocados in the corner store rot.

Father’s currency is sludge

and digging is hard.

Children make mud pies under oak tree,

new life squirms below.

Red robins on the plastic swing set

consume the caterpillar army one by one.