Your Garden and the Praying Mantis
The abdomen of an adult mantis
Is covered with wings. One scalding
Afternoon you dripped under a black
Shirt and told me how a mantis nods
Its wings in flight at you, in the air
A hint of green, rusted blades.
The moon tilts, a succession of
Saucers aloft in an expanse of blue.
Dark overgrown summer, thick
With undertow, rooms so deep
Iridescent fathoms which brood
Before a storm, bow to the thunder
Heads, an engine throttle. In the arch
Over the tulips where the fireworks
Grew restless and flew into the garage,
As if we were a rogue target. Such are
The days unwinding anymore, we forget
How to plan, and unfold our shirts that is
If we remembered to fold them while they
Were still warm. The paramedics took hours.
You took time off the wall and played
With its hands, shook its face. Time said
Nothing. The scaffold and the cautious
Creeping gnomes, a swarm of daffodils
Scrape the side of the garage. You spoke
Of your own death long ago, unafraid
In the room with ripples on the ceiling,
An echo of aging paint and restless wings.