Thomas Glave is the author of Whose Song? and Other Stories; Words to Our Now: Imagination and Dissent (Lambda Literary Award, 2005); The Torturer's Wife (Dayton Literary Peace Prize finalist and Lambda Literary Award finalist, 2008); and Among the Bloodpeople: Politics and Flesh (2013). He is editor of the anthology Our Caribbean: A Gathering of Lesbian and Gay Writing from the Antilles (Lambda Literary Award, 2008). His most recent work has appeared in The New York Times, The Kenyon Review, Callaloo, and in the 2012 anthologies Kingston Noir and Love, Christopher Street, among others. Glave has been the Martin Luther King, Jr. Visiting Professor at MIT, and a Visiting Fellow at Clare Hall, University of Cambridge.
David Hernandez was the recipient of a 2011 NEA Literature Fellowship in Poetry. His recent collection, Hoodwinked, won the Kathryn A. Morton Prize and is now available from Sarabande Books. His other collections include Always Danger (SIU Press, 2006), winner of the Crab Orchard Series in Poetry, and A House Waiting for Music (Tupelo Press, 2003). His poems have appeared in FIELD, Ploughshares, The Threepenny Review, The Missouri Review, TriQuarterly, The Southern Review, and Poetry Daily. He is also the author of two young adults novels, No More Us for You and Suckerpunch, both published by HarperCollins. David teaches at the University of California, Irvine, and at California State University, Long Beach. He is currently the Writer-in-Residence at California State University, Fullerton.
It hung from the eaves like a dome-light
until I knocked it down with a branch
the wind snapped from a sycamore three stories high.
The branch fell, then the nest, then the ants
bustled in and out of the frail structure:
crepe paper walls, pale gray, more air
than anything else. One westward breeze
would've sent it to my neighbor's driveway
where an ambulance rolled up a week ago. Rolled out.
Into the nest the ants came and went, demolishing
the larvae snug inside their hexagonal cells.
Imagine all the mandibles. The ceaseless scissoring.
So too the departed are taken apart and ferried elsewhere.
I washed my hands, poured a bowl of flakes, forgot
until the following day I followed the ants
spooling past the trashcans, underneath the gate,
and there below the window, in the blue
shade of the house where the nest had fallen
upside down on a patch of moss, I saw a skull
crowning through the green world.
— "Hornet's Nest," from Hoodwinked © 2011, from Sarabande Books. Used with permission of author.
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