Today's poem is by Sarah Hannah

Destroying Angel (Amanita virosa)

I'm way in, way in you, Mushroom—
Membered in your harem,
Shirted in your morning veil,
An eager moth at your light,
Your curtained lumens,
All laid out in bridal white.

How did you come to be—
Hatted and ruffled,
Fait accompli?
I was studious, at peace;
I was minding my own business.
You thumbed right up and nudged me.

It was dawn. The leaves,
The intractable roots of trees,
Gave way; the violets stood
And watched. I tripped and fell.
I am still falling.

This species, like many others,
Can grow to sizes far exceeding the normal range.

You don't need me;
You reseed easy as winking.
The circles loosen and descend,
Pale rings that shudder into powder,

Sifting through the forest floor,
Gaining footholds in the light rain,
Thrones of betrothal accruing,
Until I am enveloped—eloped
In a one-way promise, bespoken by a spore,
No time for a proper wedding—

A quick note posted home,
"Am sluggish, having visions":
The snails are hungry and thronging;
Everyone wants a piece.

Copyright © 2004 Sarah Hannah All rights reserved
from Longing Distance
Tupelo Press
Reprinted by Verse Daily® with permission

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