KillinG the Colony

by Mary Ann Honaker


I had no particular malice
toward the tiny ants trotting
over my kitchen counter, close
to towers of creamer and sugar,

even spoke to them as they carried
breadcrumbs and boulders of spilled sweet.
They lived and I wished them to live;
wished my words were more

than senseless distant thunder,
that I could tell them to search
and gather in the sun, not under
my dull buttery fluorescence.

But I could not live with them,
even as I wiped the counter clean
around them gently, I knew.
I bought the traps and put them down,

watched them march behind the coffee
and carry nubs of death back to the colony,
so diligent, so delicate, so small.
It was like you and I:

I without malice and without wanting
to cause the throes of loving's death,
poisoned our love nonetheless,

thinking it necessary, thinking
there's no other way to separate
what is yours from what is mine.



Mary Ann Honaker is the author of It Will Happen Like This (YesNo Press, 2015). Her poems have appeared in 2 Bridges, Drunk Monkeys, Euphony, Juked, Little Patuxent Review, Off the Coast, Van Gogh’s Ear, and elsewhere. Her work has been nominated for a Pushcart prize. Mary Ann holds an MFA in creative writing from Lesley University. She currently lives in Beckley, West Virginia.