Nothing upon the grasshopper’s back more
than the resentment of ants, their taxes
ever squeezing out empathy for others
who earned their pensions the old fashioned way
chewing leaves all summer while the scouts crept
slowly back to the city, laboring
like scarabs under their burdens of dung,
all for the drones and the queen’s monopoly
on breeding and leisure. It’s not enough
to suffer such a dull career, you must
blame those who have the freedom of the fields
as if they were the ones who made you ants,
and the queen were some wise benefactress
giving you a job and proxy future.
You have no future, and no options now
if you believe you really need a queen.
M. A. Schaffner has had poems published in Shenandoah, Prairie Schooner, Agni, Poetry Ireland, Poetry Wales, and elsewhere. Other writings include the poetry collection The Good Opinion of Squirrels, and the novel War Boys. Schaffner spends most days in Arlington, Virginia or the 19th century.
Copyright © 2016 by M. A. Schaffner