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Asian Lady Beetle

I. THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN LADY AND ASIAN

An erasure of “What’s the Difference Between Ladybugs and Asian Lady Beetles?”

 

Although Lady      and Asian                  

look similar 

 

Lady                don’t bite, they 

never congregate

 

Asian

a true pest

                                    gather in large groups 

excrete a foul-smelling yellow

 

Yellow                                                can stain walls 

     trigger                                               Asian                  access points.

 

Asian                           naturally attracted to                           whites 

 

Therefore,                                              enter homes

    through cracks.                                      Once inside, 

 

You might find them hiding

dispose of the              Asian with soapy water.                                

 

You shouldn’t have to put up with       Asian

 

clear     out an             Asian      infestation

 

            every time.

 

II. Self-Portrait as Asian Lady Beetle

 

Red orange

is my mother’s

favorite color

so my shell

shines poppy

more flame voracious

than lipstick pretty

 

A scientist named me

the aggressive version

of the ladybug

 

I argue

I am just practiced

in self defense

sink teeth

into human flesh

bleed the scent

of dry leaves

when provoked

 

I stain yellow,

a bitter taste,

wherever I go

 

Leave the eyes

of men

spilling flame

 

Find me feasting

on aphids & cousins

upon grape curtains

in cities of plump beans

 

I descended

from beetles

who survived

chemical plumes

7,000 miles of sky

 

of course,

to thrive,

I fight.

 

 


Jade Cho is a writer and educator from Oakland, CA. She is the author of In the Tongue of Ghosts (First Word Press, 2016) and a co-founder of Ghostlines Collective and The Root Slam. Her poems have appeared in BOAAT, Hot Metal Bridge, The Offing, and elsewhere. She holds a BA in Ethnic Studies from UC Berkeley and is an MFA candidate in poetry at Arizona State University.