The Walking Stick Insect

  of South America often loses an antenna or leg—but
always grows a new appendage. Often nature makes a
mistake and a new antenna grows where the leg was lost.
        —Ripley’s Believe It or Not!
Eventually the
most accident-prone
or war-weary
walking sticks
are entirely
reduced to antennae
with which they
pick their way
appalled by

This poem and others featured in The Paris Review are out now in the collection The Jam Jar Lifeboat and Other Novelties Exposed from Red Berry Editions.