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Marilyn Francis: a poem



Wasps


...I cannot persuade myself to believe that a beneficent and omnipotent God would have designed and created...


Charles Darwin


It's an absurdly warm November:

something is going wrong with the weather

and it's all our fault. I am sulking outside

on a leftover blue metal chair.

On the ground, by my shoes, two

wobbly wasps. One on its feet

the other pedalling at the air.


I'm almost sorry for these wasps,

for the loss of their carefree, high-summer selves:

buzz-bombing picnickers, getting drunk on spilled beer

in pub gardens, getting the odd sting in.


Now it's nearly winter

and the good times are almost over

but maybe, godlike, I can keep you going,

wind you up, make you last a little longer.


I pick a leaf and gently turn one over

and encourage the other

out of a concrete crack.

They wobble about a bit on the flat

before returning to their places –

wobbling and legs-in-air.


The afternoon wears on.

The sun weakens

and the air cools.

The wasps are dead

on the patio.



Marilyn Francis lives and writes poetry in Radstock, an old mining town in what was the NE Somerset coalfield. She has had poems published in: The North, The High Window, Poetry Salzburg, Raceme, and some other places. Circaidy Gregory Press published a collection of her poems, red silk slippers, but that was a long time ago. She is now collecting some new poems for another.

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