Lightning Bug by Meagan Ruby Wagner

Lightning Bug

It took my eyes a moment to find you
Hopping from rock to rock
In the hazy July dusk
Hands outstretched in front of you
Tongue stuck sideways
Proof of concentration
Chasing after fireflies
That blink in Morse code
On nights like this
You caught one and ran to me
Opened your hands
And gasped
He got a little hurt, I think
I must have caught him too hard
Is he going to get better?
Oh, he might, if we set him here in the grass
And let him rest
I lie
I cannot bring myself to tell you that
This little lightning bug is
Definitely going to die
Wings bent back at lethal angles
One twitching in time with the still blinking abdomen
You set this tiny broken body down
Gently on the dew dusted grass
And lean in to whisper
Get better, little guy,
Sorry I caught you so hard
And I clutch your free hand until
You say
Ouch, mom, you’re squeezing me too hard
And shake free
And run

by Meagan Ruby Wagner

Instagram: @meagan.ruby.wagner.writes
Twitter: @M_Ruby_Wagner

Editor’s Note: Some poems carry the weight of knowledge despite their easy narrative. Parenthood is not for the weak.


2 responses to “Lightning Bug by Meagan Ruby Wagner”

  1. Ed Hack Avatar
    Ed Hack

    Just the right touch…lovely discipline at work.

  2. richardsund Avatar

    A powerful poem that captures the difference between war and pure freedom. I’d swim in whatever I had, and I can imagine how he saved his Mother and needed to share who she was. Gratitude from me for your poem ! ☮

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