Codex Lepidoptera

[ex: clandestine-tropic moth, cornella lesioglauca]

Past water lily, feathered mint, transparent
burning prairie— You can come close,

so close to the fire as if to touch, as if any
particle of heat could unloose your rosy

girdle or your dun-legged cloud.
From your trysts in the clandestine

tropics, your unclear early capers,
you rest among the separated cabbages:

boreal head cinnabar, and spring-streaked.
Your capes are jet, are forest-scalloped

and splotched with thought and shagbark.
Even the noxious, stump-humming toadflax

would welcome your company. Agreeable
among catkin soybean, sleepy magpie

next to cup fruitworm: until recently
we had no other names for your morbid dots,

your funerary plummets, your nocturnal
wainscoting. But we’ve been given

the keys to an endless codex, its pages furred
and tented, breathing and glowing in the dark.


Inspired by Katie Rose Pipkin and Loren Schmidt, and their @mothgenerator at Twitter


In response to How to Make a Moth and Moth Generator at Twitter (Katie Rose Pipkin and Loren Schmidt).

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