Posts Tagged ‘fire ants’

Ant-thropomorphic

January 13, 2013

Not on a lawn, non-residential
in one of those industrial waste zones
every city of a certain size achieves
fire ants stumble over unevenly strewn gravel
radiating out from their home mound –
normally, steps are taken to eradicate the pest,
but in places like this…
from an abandoned crane
painted in a chromatic cacophony of tags
hung a ruined body by its feet
hands palms up on the grey earth
ants crawling finger hills and valleys
as indifferent to it as any other debris
the body has a head like a giant raspberry
inflamed knots of red swollen meat
engulfing all signs of features
every trace of hair
so engorged and ripe it might
in another land
entice a male baboon to fuck it,
but not here, lonely in desolation,
waiting still to be discovered, oddly
the raspberry appears to have a stem
jutting thickly from its apex
pointing down at a slight angle to the ground
where at the end of it rests, on the north side of the mound,
in a tricolored heap of red, white and green,
a foreign flag, an eagle eating a snake
the ants, again, pay no heed to the flag
it is of no concern, warrants no alarm
ants are not patriotic, do not know loyalty to nations,
are rarely, if ever, stopped at borders,
but have been known to engage
and to be deployed in warfare
as these troopers of anthill 64 are well aware
when the boy was hung above,
stick attached,
the lad struggled valiantly, but eventually
stomach muscles give out
he died knowing his abs weren’t what they could be,
but whose are? …
and before the assailants left the scene
they were sure to hack the colony
jabbing and smacking at it
with a snapped, otherwise useless,
length of rebar, and when the colors
of their neighbors to the south draped across
their disturbed riot
they run up the flagpole and salute the screaming face
in a raucous frenzy of bites and stings,
and then, abdominals flex
up rises the bandera
prickly pear aflutter, but this anguished exercise
peters out, exhaustion
all ants are expected to do their duty for their queen
and in perfect fealty
do it they do
so much like us

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