Ode to the Cockroach

Maya Pindyck

Trashy lover, I jump

at the thought of you

hiding in mom’s dark shoe —

Oh terrible thing, called once

by a crazy lady Our Fear of Spirit,

survivor, city dweller, we all

want you gone — wings

smeared across the sidewalk.

Roach, to love you

multiplied feels impossible,

but I can rest at your feet

curled in death & watch

the amber glint of your body

frozen by flashlight. Let me

tell you a story: one summer

I grew brave, lifted your shell

from a Chinatown windowsill,

carried you one floor up,

just to know I could,

then placed you, crumbling,

deep in some forgotten corner

of the landing, where the Super

might see you & sigh, might

sweep you away, or let you

be, unbearable memory.

about the author