A very fancy bug
kept company on the porch
Shiny green body,
iridescent green head,
orange and black legs,
very long antennae.
It came closer and closer
even when I moved,
and stayed close,
watching the occasional grasshopper,
exploring the rocking chair.
It is beautiful.
Later I tried finding its identity
on the internet.
It looked similar to a False Bombadier Beetle,
but not exactly.
I clicked through the jillions of photos
but gave up when I pressed the arrow
to the last page in the beetle section
of the bug guide.
It was page 4,447!
I was only on page 60-something.
It doesn’t really matter what it’s called;
it doesn’t know it’s name either,
besides, a name
doesn’t define any of us,

In the evening,
a turtle was hanging around
the big bowl of dog food
too high for it to reach,
so I gave it five tiny pieces.
Then I wondered if that was safe,
so I also gave it some beet greens.
It ate the five pieces of dog food first,
using its paw
to hold each roundish morsel,
so it could chomp into it.
It seemed to know exactly where the pieces
were strewn on the porch
and after finishing one
determinedly headed
to the next.
I think it loved the dog food.
It left the beet greens.
It’s a beautiful turtle,
with white dots lining the crest
of its tail
and back feet.
Its front feet are covered
in raised red dots;
its shell is beautiful.
Probably a tortoise,
not a turtle, actually,
though it’s not the same one
that I plucked from the fish pond
That one had white dots
on its front feet.
Correct id
not withstanding,
nice to have the company.






My friend Mary,
who grew up in this part of the world,
wrote to say she remembered this bug
and learned that in Texas,
where she now lives,
it’s called an Eastern Bumelia Borer.
So I read a little myself
and my guess is that around here
its larvae bore into locust
or mulberry trees.
Thanks, Mary!