The Beetle – a Poem for Two People

Ah, the little beetles and flying insects that drift around us in the summer and occasionally land on us. For some people that’s not a problem, a gentle brush off is all that is required. For others, it becomes a major life event.

(And apologies for the ‘boldness’ of one of the speakers – I don’t have the time to wrestle the wordpress blockquote out of its default italics: also, there are no tabs. Grr.)

The Beetle – a Poem for Two People

I’ve got a beetle up my arm.

It isn’t doing any harm.

That’s what you say, but you don’t know
how fast these little beetles go,
or where they run, or what they eat
or that their little beetle feet
when magnified are horrid claws.
Scaled up they’re like a lion’s paws.
And that’s what’s loose inside my shirt.
Those massive claws are bound to hurt.

Hold still, I’ll try to get it out.

Hold still?!

                  It doesn’t help to shout.

I’m saying nothing of the jaws;
the teeth are much worse than the claws.
And mandibles, he’s got those too,
enormous pincers set to chew
a great gash through my lovely skin
then burrow down and deeper in
to suck my blood and gnaw my brain.
Don’t laugh, I think I feel the pain.
And that’s what’s loose inside my shirt.
Get on with it, it’s going to hurt.

It’s just a beetle, nothing more.
Oh please! Stop rolling on the floor.

It’s coming for me, I can tell,
please tell the family I died well.

Hold still. And yes, I’ve got the beast.

Ah, just before it had its feast.
How big is it, this brutal thing?
Ten centimetres, wing to wing?

Ten millimetres.

                               They’re the worst.

A good job that I got there first.

You saved my life.

                                I know, I know.

Now, where’s the beast?

                                          I let it go.

You set the evil monster loose?

A tiny beetle. What’s the use?
I think that you should go inside,
away from nature, go on, hide.

© Huw Evans 2019


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