and I am born again, unsure if I ever really went under in an above ground pool,
but he says it counts just as much so I light a cigarette to balance my new body back out and pass it.
I drink from the bottle, flap my soggy wings and squirm.
The butt comes back to me a jewel beetle,
belly-up and drowning from the party’s open-mouthed kiss.
Her limbs rattle: we are not supposed to be here, but
this is where I’ve always been so I pull her from blueblack anathema
and say, “maybe Nathan will baptize you, too.”
Or maybe the beetle’s a ritual atheist
and I’m just another starving philanthropist knocking on her door.
Overindulged, entertain this:
what I take as evidence of cryptids is only a beetle in the backyard,
rolled over with bent wings, still glistening, and a testament.
Cursing herself for having been born so small.
Tara Ventura is a teacher, poet, and graduate student from Indianapolis, Indiana. Her work has been featured in Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis’s literary magazine, genesis. When she isn’t in the classroom, she usually can be found petting her dog.