Trying to Liberate the Firefly

I have been trying to liberate the firefly.

I have been trying to confirm my humanity.

I have been trying to make new friends

but they have been struck immobile by

my destructive tendencies. Nobody likes

a criminal, no less one that is female.

And yet there’s simply no time to be

both pious & provocative. At any given

time I’ll have cherry stains on my fingers.

At any given place I’ll be levitating above

the stolen artifacts of my victims—

birthday wishes, declarations of love,

that sort of thing. But I stay away from

their gardens. It’s so clearly arrogant

that you think you can codify nature,

that its feral randomness can be tamed

to occupy your perfect measured space.

Not in your backyard, you say. A piece

of advice: your rituals should be sung

in secret, not written down, & then

you can play with them yourself.

Any good agent of change will tell

you that. It’s a habit like anything else:

to clear out a room, to alienate, to tidy up

& throw out. You don’t want to feast on

old things. You don’t want the light lingering

around in a fist when it could be free.

Photo Credit: Mike Lewinski via Creative Commons 

About the author

Tara Orzolek is a writer and artist living in Northampton, Massachusetts. Her poetry is forthcoming in The Laurel Review and Word For/Word.

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