Genevieve Betts

The Last Cicadas


The Last Cicadas

by Genevieve Betts

The last cicadas thump and buzz
like a souped-up Cadillac.

They really are the most beautiful
plague. I too hum among their

windowpane wings, veined
like lace on whirring blades.

Sugar skulls commence their séance,
flicker pigments in candied ambiance.

The desert’s hot verve vacillates
at the last lurch of summer,

oases wavering in their distant trick
I fall for again and again.

[…]

The Last Cicadas2020-06-08T06:49:07+00:00

Crown Heights Vignette


Crown Heights Vignette

by Genevieve Betts

Jerk meat and roti, cow skin and goat feet,
neighbors in curlers outside the laundry gossiping,

children chicken dancing at cops driving by,
all sharp elbows, clucks, and emboldened eyes,

my bodega on Rogers and Montgomery Street,
its cat and her kittens in the back, mewling,

Chinese deliverymen zipping around senior citizens—
dominos, spliffs, arguing, Jamaican accents,

ships bellowing and seagulls bomb diving
trash bags that super’s stack against the […]

Crown Heights Vignette2020-06-08T06:50:14+00:00