Page 45 - HEF Pen & Ink 2023
P. 45

By Fiona Kuntz
Come little wanderer, in between the weeds; Come little questioner, high up in the trees. Up upon some bough, sits the Nightingale; Come a little closer and he’ll tell you a tale.
His smile’s full of beetles, his eyes are inky black;
He’ll tickle the mites in his silver beard as he shoulders his great sack.
Centipedes burrow inside his hair, he smells of rotting earth;
Moths take shelter inside his ears; his nails are caked with dirt.
He only steps in shadows, quiet as a whisper wind;
He’s best seen at sunset, sunlight dare not touch his skin. The outside world will turn its head, as he brushes his soiled coat;
He’ll beckon you come closer, while he shakes the spiders from his throat.
“Here in these forests, many secrets lie;
Beings here so ancient, they’ve forgotten how to die. Insects, they know, as some of the first to walk the earth; They’re older than the flowering trees, they’re older than man’s birth.
Mighty Eagle By Alyona Zimmerman
  Bookish By Emma Allred
“They’ve seen civilizations go about their merry way. They’ve watched as molded skeletons turn over in their grave.
There’s a silence in this forest, simple sound cannot pen- etrate.
The insects will be watching as you cross the pearly gates.”
He’ll rub his lichen temple, curious what you seek. He’ll gesture to his giant sack and ask if you will take a peek.
“The knowledge inside this sack, the answers to the uni- verse.
Spirits, legends, tales of olde will satisfy your thirst.
But traveler be wary, there is a warning I must give you first.
“Every winged insect, was once as you are now. Subsequent to enlightenment, they spoke the sacred vow. There is not a thing they did not know, a thing they had not heard.
But they found themselves whirring,
Unable to speak a word.”

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