The photo shows what was going on on my verandah once the sun warmed up this morning and brought the wasps out to feed on a small corpse which I assume was left there by the cats. The villagers here in Spain would call it a langosta, I think. Even with my limited knowledge of the animal world, I do know it’s not a lobster, but I’m not sure if it was actually a locust, a cricket, a grasshopper or a katydid. Whatever it was, though:
Those tangled legs will no more leap
in estival excess, nor scrape
the incidental music for my dreams.
(I’m really not sure I can get away with “estival excess”, but estival seems to be a far more ordinary word in Spanish than it is in English, and I am talking about a Spanish summer – which is, in many ways, rather more excessive than the UK variety.)
To be fair, I don’t particularly care what the creature was. I’m pretty sure it was a pest, and I’m more interested in etymology than entomology. I am glad, though, to see that the cats are helping look after the garden and the wasps are taking care of some of the cleaning for me.
The stripe-shirt scavengers go
straight for the eyes: they feast
on the sweet sights of summer
stored in the celled pantry of the brain.
The two poetry fragments have been in my notebook for several years. I stole a phrase from the same work-in-progress for another poem recently, but I really do need to go back and try and add some connecting tissue and force some kind of structure on this piece. Which is just about the exact opposite of what the wasps are doing to the body on the verandah.