there we both were in the garden
or our bedroom, we’d made love or
had just finished arguing about the bush—
hydrangea or rhododendron—
purple ivies were climbing our back fence,
the thai basil was wilting, one of us
had forgotten to water her or was it
autumn and she was dying on her own?
either way, the infested pepper dangling by
frayed browning stemthreads caught both
our attention —how did that worm get inside?—
you mumbled something about larvae.
but I knew it was a winged thing
a puncture, a black and wicked door.
by Airea D. Matthews
Airea D. Matthews is a Cave Canem and Callaloo fellow, a 2013 Pushcart Prize nominee, and is currently a Zell Postgraduate Poetry Fellow at the University of Michigan where she earned her MFA. Her poetry has appeared or is forthcoming in The Missouri Review, The Baffler, The Indiana Review and WSQ. She is currently at work on her first full-length poetry collection. She lives in Detroit with her husband and four children.