Queer Ecologies

by Chris Watkins

we’ve all seen two boy
dogs go at it, but Nature,
you’ve heard, isn’t queer

a farmer said once:
every peacock’s a drag queen,
she paints blue bright eyes
in her five-foot tailfeathers
which grow like glue-on lashes

i paddle through marsh
grass till water turns brackish—
both nonbinary

that class project where
caterpillars transitioned
from green lumps, larva,
into swallowtails, monarchs—
and me in my chrysalis

the ruby breasted
hummingbird deep-throated by
cardinal flowers

assigned four genders to white
striped sparrows; turn those
binoculars on me—i,
too, can be scientific

Published on January 30, 2024