Cricket

Cricket by Erini Katopodis
It’s like this: I am turning into a cricket. The backs of my legs are so itchy I scratch them day and night. I wake up with my legs rubbing together, with a ringing in my ears. Doctors say it’s tinnitus but I know it’s something insectile and instinctual, my body making music. I’m shrinking, too. Losing length. And instead of my hair growing long I know I have preliminary antennae, stretching out from the backs of my knees and arms and top of my head, ready to smell and sense and hear. 
It is a shift in belonging, the same way some girls move to the city and start wearing leather and realize they’re punk-hearted and greasy, the same reason a boy might move to the country and soften and stop eating anything that doesn’t come from the earth. I sleep best not in my house, but just outside it. I curl up in a crevasse of earth, outside the window where my bed is, adjacent to where I should be sleeping. I get bug-eyed,angled and tense. I feel the cool panels of my dew-covered wall. I curl up and sing and sleep and sing.I imagine someone else in my bed: they are maybe a cricket-turned human, taking my place better than I could. To them, I am the background music, night-sounds,something necessary but slight. Something you do not think about, but notice when missing. Something you do not sleep until you hear.