Jack Dann

by David M. Harris

Dear Jack:

I squashed a bug again the other day, one from
the crowd that buzzes round my head. I feel
like I’m an overripe banana.

The biggest bugs are easiest to kill,
so they go first. The little ones ignore
my slapping hands. I swat at them and, hit
or miss, they come again, remind me one
more time of careless words, a meeting skipped
to network someone else; if I forget,
these gnats revive once more, until I kill
them yet again, and yet again and one
more time. So now I think I’ve killed the last
of them that bore your name. We’ll see. Perhaps
this time they won’t return.