Moths and Moonlight

I grabbed my two suitcases and two personal bags and at 3am, I headed to the airport to begin my new life in Texas. Just as I threw my bags in the backseat and my guitar to the side, a mariposa Bruxa or perhaps a polia scattered across my front porch and into the Uber. I lost it in the car and after searching for a while, I left the ghost alone. “Why are you following me!” I exclaimed to the silent April air. The first day I got to Texas it rained, it hadn’t rained for ages. I swear wherever I go the rain always follows me. I have the water of the Caribbean and the cold of Chicago embodied in me and I bring it wherever I go. I stood in the baggage line and scrimmaged though my mothers tote bag. The moth flew out and towards the heavens. In this case, the heavens being the bright lights of the American Airlines skyline. Their ceiling seemed to extend endlessly and the moth flew out of sight. I carried the moth with me into the airport. “How strange” said the man standing next to me. “Did you bring a moth in here?” I guess so I replied. They seem to follow me wherever I go! I can’t explain it. Sometimes, I detest the things. I hate them for their powdered wings and nocturnal flapping. Other times, I see the beauty in their relentless search for light. Their suffering derived of misguided pursuits. Their sonic connection. Other days, I loathe their crescent wings hidden obscured from the day, but not from gods eyes. Emily tells me that moths are her favorite bug. They are delicate, elegant and misunderstood. They’re literary, quiet and significant in their seemingly invisible cloak. But in New Mexico during the pandemic, I despised their very essence. Sleepless and weary, there summer invasion seems an omen to follow the biblical plague that dragged throughout summer 2020. I A few hundred moths would gather at dawn and dusk. They waited at the doorways and gathered at the hearth each time my roommates went out to smoke a joint. Thirty, forty, fifty in the house. I hated them. I killed them with the reflection of false light and bowls of soapy water. I drowned them with glass bowls and lamps in every room in the house and in the chapel. I didn’t have money for a blue light insect zapper. So I settled on drowning the damned creatures. Ironically though, sealing the moths with the same fate that I used to dream of not as suicidal idealization but more so as a sense of spiritual numbness and rebirth. They used to swarm outside our rusted screen doors. Living with five people was hard enough but the new roommates were too much. I didn’t mind the spiders in the house. For to many including the Lakota tribes, moths are symbols of the divine feminine. But the moths were flapping and flitting away my sanity. I think this is when my ADHD slowly started coalescing into OCD. I spent hours mopping the floors, vacuuming indigo spirit seeds out of the carpet and crumbs off the stove top. I’ve lived in chaos, calamity and houses of creativity. I’m fine with shared spaces hostels and co-habitation. But the damn moths were my new nemesis. In Florida, I didn’t have to worry about the wretched wings of fallacious things. I lived in a gated community where no one talked to anyone and my beautiful apartment with a pool and amenities I used to only dream about. And a room bigger than my childhood home. Yet, all I felt was emptiness and profound loneliness. I hated my perfect house. So why a damn month? Two years after the moth invasion and moving all the way to the east coast: Why did the damned creature follow me from my lonely abode to my very flight to go start a new life? What the hell does this moth want? And then the next day I saw another in a beautiful pair of earrings a dead-head skull centered moth. Harbinger of death or portender of good fortune? What did it desire of my itching skin? I’d lived with spiders before and and killed all the fleas in the couches. The only woman in the house with a hatred for dirt and the resilience to cleanup after five boys and sometimes a squatter. I’d killed all the fleas on the couches but the moths wouldn’t leave so I left. I left and the absurd spirit followed me.

Published by Silent Singer

The Silent Singer

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