Poem | Point Pelee

 

During the Fall, monarchs
Descend upon Pelee
Like the laughter of children
Among the gardens of Eden
On a journey south to Mexico
With hundreds of miles to go
A layover stop for them—
They blow in with the wind
And drop like a quilt
Of orange and black patches
Covering the entire island to
Flutter in the weeds and trees
As if the north air were speaking—
The trick is to get in close
To one, backlit by the sun
On a leaf, to see how singular
And delicate each wing is
A skeleton in transparency
Which composes the colony—
And consider how life
Began eons ago with milkweed
Scattered across the countryside
The sky falling, and the sun
Coming down to rest on this island.

Published in the September 8, 2017 issue: 
Tags

Stephen Rybicki is a poet and reference librarian at Macomb Community College, and the author of Abbreviations: A Reverse Guide to Standard and Generally Accepted Abbreviated Forms. He lives in Romeo, Michigan with his wife Clarice.

Please email comments to letters@commonwealmagazine.org and join the conversation on our Facebook page.

Must Reads

Politics
Religion
Books
Collections