out of the earth like innocent serpents set to strike.
Their folded, poisoned heads assume
an attitude of piety; humility of old
is written in the language of their curves.
And you will curse them as they cross your lawns
and run them down, attempt
their sure destruction with machineries
and poisons, with the blind sweep of the scythe.
But they will seed the earth invisibly
and burgeon up again like little nuns
coiled over ancient prayers. I warn you
to approach them with respect.
Carelessly fingered, every cowering stem
will strip you to the bone;
lay your soft hands open.
And innocently celebrate the spilling of your blood.