The McKinley Review Magazine

Caterpillars 

By: Claudia Serea | Posted on: August 2018 

The caterpillars have devoured

the plum trees,

the Rose of Sharon,

the cherry, locust,

mulberry, and walnut trees,

 

leaving them bare,

brown, disfigured,

covered in sticky webs,

skeletons instead of leaves.

 

We find the house invaded,

furry creatures clinging

on curtains and walls,

 

falling in cups,

twitching on the porch,

 

too many for sparrows

and swallows to eat.

 

Unhurried,

they won’t stop chewing,

 

the silent crawl

and chew

 

of life and death.

 

This summer,

they win.

 

Claudia Serea’s poems and translations have appeared in Field, New Letters, 5 a.m., Meridian, Gravel, Prairie Schooner,and many others. An eight-time Pushcart Prize and four-time Best of the Net nominee, she is the author of Angels & Beasts (Phoenicia Publishing, 2012), A Dirt Road Hangs From the Sky (8th House Publishing, 2013), To Part Is to Die a Little (Cervena Barva Press, 2015) and Nothing Important Happened Today (Broadstone Books, 2016). Serea is a founding editor of National Translation Month, and she co-hosts The Williams Poetry Readings in Rutherford, NJ. Her latest project is Twoxism, a poetry-photography collaboration blog with Maria Haro.