Finally, after nine years
of snouting through darkness
he inches up scarred bark
and cuts loose the yammer of desire:

the piercing one note of a jackhammer,
vibrating like a slow bolt of lightning
splitting the air
and leaving a smell like burnt tar paper.

Now it says Now it says Now
clinging with six clawed legs
and close by, a she like a withered ear,
a shed leaf brown and veined,
shivers in sync and moves closer.

This is it, time is short, death is near, but first,
first, first, first
in the hot sun, searing all day long
in a month that has no name:

this annoying noise of love. This maddening racket.
This – admit it – song.

Poem: Margaret Atwood

Photo: Wil Hershberger, Annual Cicada Emergent
Swamp Cicada, Tibicen chloromea, sheeding
the last juvenile exoskeleton and emerging as an adult. Princeton, New Jersy, USA.

Sweat and Cicadas

I can hear them outside of my window, over the sounds of traffic.
The Cicadas singing their mating song in the Summer heat.

Sweat drips between my breasts.

Frogtied KneelingI tilt my head back and try to catch the nonexistent breeze from the window. The sweat is wetting my hair and gathering at my Collar. It continues to flow with gravity. Moisture is pooling around my armpits and along my arms where they are touching my body.  Another pool of sweat slicks between my inner thighs and behind my knees as I kneel with my ankles connected to my wrists.  The cuffs, themselves, are wet.

Sweat continues to bead along my upper lip as I wait in silence, only broken by the Cicada’s song.

If I am a lucky dievca, my Master will come to lick the sweat off my body and use me as he sees fit.

The Cicadas sing on.

Cicadas sing most actively in hot weather and do their most spirited singing during the hotter hours of a summer day, in a roughly 24 hour cycle.