The Supreme Moment

As an ant is powerless
Against a raised boot,
And only has an instant
To have a bright idea or two.
The black boot so polished,
He can see himself
Reflected in it, distorted,
Perhaps made larger
Into a huge monster ant
Shaking his arms and legs
Threateningly?

The boot may be hesitating,
Demurring, having misgivings,
Gathering cobwebs,
Dew?
Yes, and apparently no.

by Charles Simic

Comments (1)

Not unlike the anatomical errors in Joyce's 'Trees', the image is fallacious and self contradictory - a raised boot wil show a sole to a small creature threatened by it, not any part of the boot in which that creature could see its own reflection. This kind of error destroys the very essence of the poem.