Unloved: An Encyclopedia of Ostracized Animals – Friendly Formidae

Friendly Formidae
– In memory of Curt Mobley and Friendly Fred, the carpenter ant

So the ants, they were your friends, right?
I knew many of them by their first names.
Fred for one. He was a friendly one.
He introduced me to his sisters.

Working together, ants never go
alone. Not ever. They looked kind.
Patient, prudent, temperate,
sterile, wingless with articulated waists
like 19th Century ladies.

Morasses. Teeming hundreds,
social as one being,
trailing, a sticky line.
Flowing like molasses,
black, steaming.
With purposeful mastication
they chew up my house.

This poem was created in a workshop at Spark Central with guidance from Laura Read and others. It was published in the book, Unloved: An Encyclopedia of Ostracized Animals.

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