A reading by the poet

We’re proud biting gnats, abroad in a windstorm,
with hunger we navigate onto our prey:
whenever we find any blood-bearing target
we claim our prize, then we go our way.

We gnats have a history of years uncounted
when we lived on nestlings, which helpless lay;
while our natural sustenance (you) was evolving
from thick-skinned apes into people today.

We probably serve a hygienic purpose
in bleeding superfluous blood from our prey:
we are happy to render such unintended service,
don’t bother to thank us, it’s just our way.

Meet our gnattiest gnat, whose claim to fame
are his twentyfive million blood-sucking bites,
and who hopes to inflict that many more,
if people don’t wake up and claim their rights.

Once people were scarce and our pickings were slim;
but folks have now just overrun our planet
and endanger the future, for us and for them;
but we live for the present, and delight in biting

From A Peck O' Poems for the 99%
by JK Burnham