In the weeks and days before monsoon,
rain is not a promise.
It is a hope,
and a tease.
I see it walking across the sky as I walk across the desert.
The cicada was perfect and perfectly still, so I picked it up, placed it on my palm.
I admired the beautiful wings
contemplated a noisy courtship
the nuances of gratification
so much to accomplish as life shortens
and, forming a cage with my fingers,
carried the insect home.
Just as I entered the house, my hand
zzzzt zzzzt zzzt zzzt zzzzt
I grabbed the camera with my other hand and headed to my outdoor worktable.
Cicada and I looked at each other for a moment
and then the little being I had mistaken for dead
stood on its head
spinning in moves
that would impress a break dancer.
a final performance
a memorable dance of death
I'm still hoping for rain
and a noisy courtship.