The Pluck

A closed black flower sits primly
in the depths of the cool jungle.

Prancing through the lush greenery,
a mischievous monkey stops in wonder.

Faint sound of cicadas whir
as it carefully puts out a long hairy finger
and strokes the smooth petals with its fingertips.

Hidden baboons chuckle as the monkey
peels back one petal like a banana.
Inside, a pale red translucent bulb
quivers like the needle of a meter,
a glowing sliver of hot charcoal.

The monkey tentatively reaches out
to touch the frail pistle.
When the black arms yawn out widely
on-looking animals hoot and slap each other on the back,
as the jungle heats up in a noisy racket.

The monkey gently cups the bulb with both hands
before plucking it from its mossy bed
then scampers off with its treasure.

High in the trees, a plumed bird gives out a shrill cry.

(written sometime in college)


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