The Monarch

The monarch
flapped in the open yard, large,
pulsing as a ghost,
no more to me than an ordinary insect,
dying, almost unnoticed
with the other darting spirits
by the waxy pachysandra,
rapidly consumed by the earth.

I was astonished
to see, one night,
a filter of light
sift through its dusty wings,
and to think that the monarch,
floating between the dewy
buds of the red roses,
was transformed
into one of God's damp servants.

For life
it siphons nectar from milkweed
until its last swimming sweep
as it lights onto the cold sill of my room
to watch and throb with pungent glory.

In my room,
over a bed bleached white, stretched taut,
my family hovers. They shuffle and need faith.
When sun oozes in, all morning
they sit and wait to strike
like black ants
surging over a dying insect.
They peer over the edge of my bed,
sip their juice.

Copyright © 2006 by Elizabeth Twiddy Poems