Species, Manifold

Inside my hands
a centipede unhooks its feathered feet.

In shiny defiance
her kind are multiplying.

She likes the flavour of sun on bone,
bone on stone, dry, clod-covered stones.

Her eggs. Translucent, licked, pearl light,
they remind me

in this clearing, in the toffee coloured soil
a mother is born every minute.

Under a tree that invites lightning
inside a ground split like mango

she reminds me,
all of the spawning, the arthropods

like trees alight
they mock us

with their thrum, their creamy ovum songs
their bare aching, their bright bare luck.

Catherine Trundle


Catherine Trundle is a writer, mother, anthropologist and academic, based in Wellington, New Zealand. She writes flash fiction, poetry and experimental ethnography. Recent works have appeared in Landfall, Plumwood Mountain and Flash Frontier.

© 2019