Selfness

Have you ever seen a moth drown?

Its wings disintegrate on its body

And leave great smudges,

Grey and yellow dust all over the sink

Have you ever seen a moth drown?

Neither have I,

Because how can you watch it,

On its back (a back disappearing)

Limbs flailing, reaching

Then becoming still, resigned

Then forgetting its resignation

Throwing off its death

Trembling with all its tiny life,

A life fast ebbing from it

In flowing grey and yellow

Have you ever felt a moth drown?

I knew that I should kill it,

But I could not crush that graceful body

Here

everything is offered its own death,

We believe in nature,

The Brutal, Humbling Beauty of it.

So I gave it a piece of paper,

And it grabbed, and pulled,

And before I could stop it

It had fled from the paper to my finger,

Where it clung, sending chills down my arm.

 

Have you ever seen a moth drown?

I set it on the bath mat

To live silently until dawn, or maybe nine.

I will check for it tomorrow,

And for my sake, it will be gone,

Flown away on pitiful shredded wings.

Have you ever seen a moth die?

Not I.

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