• Vol. 08
  • Chapter 06
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Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?

Boys focus on what is in front of them
fascinated by a dance of ants as they ceilidh
round their nest – a rush of frantic antics.

One kid flashes a magnifier to study
legs, antennae, head, thorax, abdomen,
the hard, chitin coat of the exoskeleton,
more like a shiny, liver-coloured,
plastic mac under his lens.

His passive auburn friend has no spyglass
is merely gleeful to see that, under sunlight,
ant-bodies reflect red on the spectrum.

The insects, oblivious to the small giants
observing their Lilliput lives,
carry on with the tasks in front of them:
to build a colony, support the breeder, feed the queen,
protect her issue, remove the dead.

In turn, the boys are blind to the giant
of a bear
peering over their peering
with the same glee-filled grin as the red-haired lad,
still fixated on his ant-nest quest.


Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?

The ursine observer is pleased to see
that certain sunlit head-fur of the human,
and certain neck protection,
resemble the hue of his own big-bear body hair.

We are all looking for similarity, familiarity,
attempting to be fastidious
in overlooking difference.