by Holly Day
The caterpillar crawls along the leaf, a promise of butterflies
thwarted. Rough, orange knobs cover its back, a rash of wasp eggs
laid just days before. At any moment
wasp larvae could hatch and split through the caterpillar’s soft, emerald skin
tumble clumsily across its helpless body, devour it so slowly
until only a dead, empty husk remains.
Holly Day’s poetry has recently appeared in Asimov’s Science Fiction, Grain, and Harvard Review.