James Hoch

Late Autumn Wasp

One must admire the desperate way
it flings
itself through air amid winter’s slow
and clings to shriveled fruit, dropped
Coke bottle,
any sugary residue, any unctuous
and slug-drunk grows stiff, its joints
wings stale and oar-still, like a heart;
yes, almost
too easily like a heart the way, cudgeled,
it lies
waiting for shift of season, light, a thing
to drink down,
gnaw on, or, failing that, leaves half of
itself torn
willingly, ever-quivering, in some
larger figure.

James Hoch
Late Autumn Wasp first appeared in New England Review, Vol. 25 Numbers 1 and 2.