Cabbage White Butterfly

Pieris rapae

“It was observed that immediately after the insects
had been killed through the application of high
frequency their bodies were hot to touch.”
—Thomas J. Headlee & Robert C. Burdette,
Some Facts Relative to the Effect of High Frequency
Radio Waves on Insect Activity (1929)

What of that star-foiled moth suspended in the heart,
capped in its tubule of glass and beating, ceaseless,
at the pit of you? The homely salt-footed corpse
of Archimedes, cankered on a distant beach?
Pulsars sing the Syracusan fleet transfigured,
all-tethering round, to an underhanded light:
waves that panic the white insect. Let us be cruel
as each is wont, hooking eyefuls of God. Let us
be awed, hot-bodied in the immaculate shear
of it—transfixed as if on the beam of a spear.