CRACKED FABLES // The Ant and the Cicada

Imagine, if you will, a field in Boring, Oregano. It’s a blisteringly hot summer’s day–the kind that makes bark peel off trees to find shelter from the sun’s calamitous gaze.

Cicada is lazing about wearing his customary bling. He’s chomping down on stogies while flipping through the latest copy of Big Buzzo Jumblies. This is what you do when you’re young, dumb and full of hum.

Ant, meanwhile, is nearby, huffing and puffing with a heavy trolley load of corn ears and woodworking equipment. She’s taking these essentials back to her place. She’s got a big project in mind…

“Wassup playa!” says Cicada. “Haul ovah’n rap wit’ me ’steada toilin’ moilin’ tha whole dam’ day!”

“I beg your pardon?” says Ant.

“Holla at’cha, yo!” says Cicada. “Hang wit’ me ho, ’steada slayin’ biz wit’ da wheel whizz!”

“I have no idea what you’re saying,” says Ant. “You do realise you’re not a gangsta rapper, don’t you?”

“Dawg, I’s that’n a bag o’ potata chips!” says Cicada. “Badassical!”

“I see,” says Ant, not seeing. “Here I am trying to build a shelter and lay up food for the winter, and all you can do is waste time showing off your posing pouch and speaking gibberish.”

“Yo, winta ain’t no thing but a chick’n wing!” says Cicada. “Sitch is I’skin already gets me eats an’ alcamahol and tasty blo’ hos any time I want!”

“Ooohhh-kay,” says Ant, rolling her eyes. “Have a wonderful summer then.”

Ant goes on her way to begin preparations. She sets about converting her place into a cosy, fifteen bedroom tree house with a spacious observation deck and outdoor heating. It’s from here that she plans to spend the winter, kicking back with a hot toddy, warm muff, and popcorn to view the Pleiades in all its stellar goodness. She’s really thought this through, you see, and stocks her new home with more ears of corn than one can poke ears of corn at. When the renovation is complete, Ant names the revamped abode Lady of Patience.

Winter eventually rolls around like a dial on an oven set to ‘Off’ and, predictably, Cicada has no food left by this point. He’s dying of malnutrition in a gutter. His rudey dudey mags have blown away to more clement climes. Even his bling has lost its zing. Ant, on the other hand, is spending every day on her deck, nibbling hot buttered, microwave nuked popcorn from the stores that she’d collected in the summer.

Cicada looks up from his self-inflicted misery and sees this. He finally swallows his pride, drags his sorry, withered arse to Ant’s door… and knocks. It opens, and there she is, looking down at him. His mouth opens–as if to say something contrite–then, changing his mind, he pulls out a piece, guns her down and takes all her stuff.

The moral of the story? “Good things come to those that wait.” Sure. Why the hell not.

 

by TONY SINGLE
© All rights reserved 2016

Envy

I can leave this stinky maze
when ingestion has turned its phase.
I ooze between limp tripe
and creep along… gripe… gripe…

A cup is filled to the brim.
Vermiculation wraps the rim.
I don’t care how… bile or chyme…
No one can absorb the brand of Cain.

 

by TETIANA ALEKSINA
© All rights reserved 2015