The Cabbage Butterfly
The human brain wants to complete—
The poem too easy? Bored. The poem too hard?
Angry. What’s this one about? Around the block
the easy summer weather, the picture-puff clouds
adrift in the blue sky that’s no paint-by-numbers.
In the corner garden, the cabbage butterfly
bothers the big leafy heads, trying to complete
its life cycle by hatching a horned monster to
chew holes in the green cloth manufactured so
laboriously by seed germ from air, water,
light, dirt. There’s no end to this, yes, no end.
Even when we want to stop, stop, stop! Even
when someone else calls us monster. Even when
we fear and hope that we will not have the final
Copyright © 2018 by Minnie Bruce Pratt. Originally published in Poem-a-Day on November 26, 2018, by the Academy of American Poets.