Ode to a Cockroach




In the ruins of Hiroshima, what survived?
Who carried on life as before,
six legs scurrying to hiding places
previously unknown, small eyes
taking in a world transformed,
antennae a-twitch, sensing new odors,
making sense of the new order?
Yes, I could snuff out your life
in an instant or less,
did I not marvel at
such persistent existence, this
unexpected ray of hope
in a world gone mad.
This poem was written in response to Miz Quickly’s day four challenge, in which she asked us to think about things that could not be killed or erased. I’m not sure why I thought to determine whether cockroaches could survive a nuclear holocaust, but I found out that they not only could but did, being one of the few living things found by those who were sent to examine the aftereffects of the bomb blast at Hiroshima. This is not the poem Miz Quickly suggested, but it’s the one that wanted to be written right now. I’m also humbly posting this on Margo’s Tuesday prompt because I think it has a volta, although I’m never quite sure.


4 thoughts on “Ode to a Cockroach

  1. Ugh, but true. I remember living in New York. And the little brown spots that were everywhere…Not sure if it was eggs or well just plain droppings.

    And I’d say it very much fit the prompt.

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