All summer the ants
have staked their claim
on the lionized maple tree.
Undeterred, convoys lead in
and out, around the clock it seems
like a shift of atoms takes place
or a stream of Redcaps
empties the Silver Streak
of its continental baggage.
Some landlord at eviction
would be ahead of the game if he
paid by the hour or by the load, either
way he’d be getting
his money’s worth on this contract,
this resolute shifting of a universe.
When they meet they must
cheer each other on, hurrahing
overloads and gargantuan accomplishments
impossible by our
standards. There are no
shirkers or goldbrickers among them,
just a slow, relentless
sandblasting of maple interior,
a quiet neutron shift of particles,
that awful displacement
only exercised otherwise
by dry rot or maple fungus we’ve no name for.
To spray them fatally
just tries the tree again.
And a hundred times it’s been tried.
Date of Birth:
Eastoftheweb, 3amMagazine, Electric Acorn, New Works Review, Aileron, Kota Review, Eclectica, Paumanok Review, Comrades, Cutbank, Tar River, Fan, etc.
The Saugus Book, Ah, Devon Unbowed, and Reflections from Vinegar Hill.
Co-editor "A Gathering of Memories, Saugus 1900-2000"
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