A cicada sings its song
in the summer trees. It molts
and leaves its shell
on display
like an artifact
in a museum, but
families of cicadas
do not take three-hour road trips
to see if their relative’s
shell will recognize them
this time
before it blows away
or disintegrates in a curious child’s hand.
The cicada family moves on
like their soft kin
freshly molted.
They do not let the shell
rot in the care of
an anonymous nurse.
The shell never had the burden
of loving or being loved.
The shell never made pumpkin pie

John Milas is currently an undergrad in the creative writing program at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

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