Fleabag

Wrote this for day 15 of the Writer’s Digest April PAD Challenge: “Write an infested poem.”

That French bitch brought home fleas–
refugees from the tramps
she beckons from alleys.
The vermin make their homes in my stucco,
blot white-washed walls with foreign specks,
and nibble at my well-lubricated chest.
Did the alleys not offer them enough
to fill their dirty families? My leftovers
could feed an African family for a year,
but these bloodsuckers want much more
than what I toss into the black and brown bins.
They want to turn my country home
into a hostel for whatever roach
will come. Rats, frogs, everything but the wasps.
What happiness can they find here?
Air conditioning, broadband, satellite TVs
won’t feed them. Will they follow me to my office
and multiply until I’m the minority
forced to seek sanctuary in the alleys we built
for them? The bombs set off don’t help;
they breed like dirty, brown bunnies
and have hard shells that could survive hell.
I might as well burn down the house
since I can never tolerate this itch
that gnaws my nuts, my chest, my fists.

I finally had the bitch put to sleep;
I claimed she was a stray.
I still keep pictures up of her
at home, at church, on bumper stickers and shirts
to prove to the world
I loved Liberty.

Critique

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