June poetry gong: Deb’s #1

Western Yellow Jacket
…….Vespula pennsylvanica

Bitten of stung?
It’s a matter of sex.
Queens can deliver either,
while males give over
their striped abdomen
to other pursuits
& die in the cold.

The fertile female
moves on & overwinters
& next summer will find the sweet
call of rotting fruit, your cologne,
something on the grill.

Don’t flail about or wave—
you’ll only egg her on
& those jagged mandibles
or a stinger never lost
will take you on
rather than turn down
a fight.

/ / /

For our first gong. Thanks, Carolee!

I have more to say about this insect, but it will wait.