Wake up, Dragonfly

by nicolecallihan

Melon and Insects
by Henri Cole

Pedaling home at twilight, I collided
with a red dragonfly, whose tiny boneless
body was thrown into my bicycle-basket.
In my bed, in a pocket notebook, I made
a drawing, then cried, “Wake up, Dragonfly.
Don’t die!” I was sitting half-naked
in the humidity, my pen in my hot palm.
I was smiling at Dragonfly, but getting angry.
So I put him in a rice bowl, with some melon
and swept-up corpses of mosquitoes,
where he shone like a big broken earring,
his terrified eyes gleaming like little suns,
making me exhausted, lonely like that,
before sleep, waiting to show my drawing.