Milkweed, common tiger, wanderer.
You of the poison-filled body,
citrine hues of your wings framed
in obsidian—flutter of stained-glass
membranes alighting on asters, thistles,
goldenrod. May your banded
instars devour their white-sapped
hosts: antelopehorn, heartleaf,
woolly, whorled. May you find
on your long migration every
waystation, each garden clumsily
raised by human hands. May you
overwinter free of herbicides
from our modified, resistant crops.
May you not fly headlong into
our windshields and grilles. May
your singular, pearly eggs shelter
on the undersides of soft-furred
leaves, survive to pupate, j-hang,
shed their chrysalis-revealing
skins. May your metamorphosis
be a lesson for we who are slow
to change. We who cannot
seem to figure how to create
something beautiful from
the dissolution we have made.