As a child, my mother would take us to the Doodle Bug Caves.
The story said that if you called
“Doodlebug, doodlebug come and get your bread and butter,”
the doodlebugs would emerge from the rocks.
I never saw them,
but I never completely did not see them either.
Always, there remained the potential for doodlebugs
and therein lay the magic.
My cup of smoke spills, flowing over my hands,
over my arms, over my body, over my legs,
until it hits the ground forming a gray pool,
slithering around my feet like an ancient snake.
Does this make me a heroine in the mists of a dark, reaching mere,
or an unearthly creature forged in the heart of a gas-giant planet,
a goddess emerging from the Other realm across the hedge divide,
or just an aging woman communing with a cup of smoke?
Johanna Haas lives in a small cottage somewhere in the sweaty middle of the United States. Three lazy lions guard her. A garden of verdant weeds, that she attempts to control, surrounds the home. She used to be a university professor who taught environmental studies. But she broke, and now writes from home. She has had fiction published in Bewildering Stories, and has short work to be anthologized in 42 Words and Where the Wind Blows.