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 Page: Profile: Poetry   Total Views: 16,595,198  

Poem Specs

VxPoem ID: 44243


Posted: August 20th. 2013 4:39:04 PM

Views: 989

Scared Shirtless!

by Phronesus Disegno

Age Group: Adult

Recently there was an event
Predict it I could not
I stepped outside to water plants
'Cause they were getting hot

And when I returned inside
I heard a buzzing sound
Behind my ear much like a fly
Too far to turn around

I flicked my collar once or twice
To shoo away this fly
But it did not get off my shirt
I just did not know why

It made the buzzing sound again
And I became concerned
I didn't recognize the sound
But here is what I learned:

Off to the mirror so that I
Could see just what was there
And holding fast with mini-claws
My shirt thrown through the air --

I don't know how I did it nor
How I did it at that,
But when I saw just what it was
Shirt off! One second flat!

A cottonwood beetle on my collar
Was buzzing a threatening song
Antennae spanned two inches plus,
And body 1-1/4 inches long!

I picked my shirt up off the floor
Now shirtless without pride
I threw the beetle clinging
To my shirt -- get it outside!

And finally aft a moment or two
It finally crawled away...
I don't get startled easily,
But I screamed out loud that day.

Author's Notes: True story. I never knew how that cottonwood beetle landed on my shirt without my knowing about it until I finished watering plants and came back inside and it buzzed at me, but without biting me. I understand that they are called "cottonwood beetles" (or better is "cottonwood borers") because they depend on cottonwood trees for survival, and there are many such trees around here.

They don't sting, but their mandibles can bite you if they are mishandled. I didn't stop to think about all that in my moment of crisis when my shirt came off in a hurry -- because the cottonwood beetle chose to cling to it and refused to let go. When I discovered what it was by looking in the mirror at the back part of my collar, I made a such a shrieking sound that would probably cause most people to laugh out loud, especially since the beetle was on top of my collar just behind my left ear.

To see what I saw, you can do a search for "cottonwood borer" or look at a picture on this link:

(I do not own or manage either of these links, but the first one shows the large beetle resting on someone's finger, and both links give some interesting information about the beetle, if you are curious. The picture of the beetle on the person's finger shows the little hooked claws, which explains how it held on to my shirt without being flicked off. Other links say it uses its flying muscles to make the buzzing sound to warn predators, which sounds like a small chainsaw. I thought the sound was a cross between a cat's meow and a common housefly.)

Author's Location: Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
More Poems: Phronesus Disegno has posted 630 additional poems- View them?
Author's Profile: To learn more about Phronesus Disegno - Click HERE
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