Donald Mace Williams


Three Bugologues

Praying Mantis

Like twigs-and-stem I lie by day
And, elbows under chin, await
Whatever bugs are sent my way—
By heaven, you know, not merely fate.

If, say, a cricket happens by
And lights a little farther out
On this, my weed, I won’t ask why.
It came because I’ve been devout.

And so I eat it, prayerfully,
This leg, then that, and now the head,
Crunchy and warm, while juice runs free.
That’s how it comes, my daily bread.


my role is small, a dot with wings,
but all of us must act our part
as if it were the lead. mine brings
applause that’s clearly from the heart.

it may seem strange, perhaps unfair,
that my part’s always such a hit
when staged on nothing but warm air,
but so it is when on i flit.

i know the people love my work
because they clap so furiously,
right in my face. they go berserk.
an encore, then, or two, or three.

Black Widow

When I first saw you, I thought yes,
you’re what I’ve always hoped to meet,
your roundness, sleekness, glossiness,
that hourglass figure, red and sweet,
on your beneath, such genteel spines
on your hind legs, and such cute fangs.
Come closer now, my heart repines
for your dear self. My future hangs
on your consent. No question: I,
to have your love, would gladly die.

Donald Mace Williams, a retired newspaper writer and editor, lives in the Texas Panhandle. His poems have run in fifty or so magazines, and his poetry translations (from languages other than Bug) have also appeared here and there.