Poetry Friday–”The BOP” Milkweed, & Summer Poem Swap

Healthy Milkweed in my backyard, © 2022 Michelle Kogan.

Happy Poetry Friday!

My poem this week is from the Poetry Sister’s August Challenge, which was to write a poem with the poem form: The Bop. You can mosey on over here to view the basic structure for this poem form. Thanks to all the Poetry Sisters for this new to me, The Bop, poetry challenge: Tanita S. Davis, Laura Purdie Salas, Mary Lee Hahn, Liz Garton Scanlon, Sara Lewis Holmes, Tricia Stohr-Hunt, and Andi Jazmon. Find and read more of these poems tagged #Poetrypals.


Summer milkweed chugged along happily
Those orangey-yellow yucky
oleander aphids appeared, sometime late May or
early June and started
sucking life out of my monarch’s milkweed.

Ladybugs ladybugs lend a hand.

Where’d they come from, how’d they get there?
Did my diversified-icy-ballet-swamp
belly flop and multiply-em…
Hurry, hurry no time to scurry,
deep dive research: aphis nerri infestation
eradicate this awful villain.
Women network consultation: Power spray-em,
Squish-em, Cut-em out, Eliminate-em!

Ladybugs ladybugs lend a hand.

Ahhh–Over whelming saturation,
hours-filled hyper-focus leaf surveillance–
fronts and backs power sprayed-em.
Blast those nasties, clear their mayhem.
Catching up–Eradicate-em—
Never Rest Must Abate-em!

Ladybugs ladybugs lend a hand.

©2022 Michelle Kogan

And many thanks to my new horticultural friend Margot Wang, an Ikebanist for her Milkweed networking friends assistance!

Photos and poem Jone Rush MacCulloch © 2022.

I recently received this lovely summer poem swap package from Jone Rush MacCulloch. The open door is to Dardistown castle in Julianstown, Ireland, which Jone visited and photographed this summer, and I think looks enchanting, and I’d love to slip in… Jone’s poem was included in Tabatha Yeatts’ new poetry book Imperfect II, Poems about Perspective: an anthology for middle schoolers. Thanks Jone for all these eye savoring goodies! And thanks Tabatha Yeatts for offering the Summer Poem Swap again this summer!

Jone Rush MacCulloch THIS MORNING, poem and photo, © 2022

Tanita S. Davis, the illustrious writer and poet is hosting this weeks Poetry Friday Roundup, at her blog {fiction, instead of lies}, thanks Tanita! Be sure to check out her books when you are there–I read her most recent book, Partly Cloudy it’s wonderful!

About Michelle Kogan Art, Illustration, & Writing

Michelle Kogan is an artist, illustrator, instructor, and writer, creating colorful allegorical figure, flora and fauna paintings and children's illustrations, which have a sensitivity to endangered species, and the environment. She is an art instructor at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and the Evanston Art Center and offers Plein Air Painting Workshops at nature venues in the Chicago area including the Lincoln Park Conservatory, Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum, and Lurie Gardens at Millennium Park. Visit her online Etsy Shop at: http://www.MichelleKoganFineArt.etsy.com and her website: http://www.michellekogan.com
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7 Responses to Poetry Friday–”The BOP” Milkweed, & Summer Poem Swap

  1. tee+d says:

    I SO resonated with the “ladybugs, ladybugs, lend a hand” refrain — I’ve only once discovered aphids, but my level of desperation was equal to yours in this poem. Eradicate ’em, indeed! And what a gorgeous photograph Jone took – thanks for sharing your swap package, and for your kind words about my book. ☺

  2. lindabaie says:

    I’ve never heard of the aphis nerri, eating all those beautiful milkweed plants, agree with “Blast those nasties, clear their mayhem.” We’re fighting Japanese beetles again this year, only thing we do is dunk them in soapy water, one beetle at a time. It’s sad what they do. I hope your fight was a win, along with the ladybugs!

  3. Aww! Hope you won the aphid battle! Thank you for protecting the monarchs!

  4. Linda Mitchell says:

    ooooooh! I love your refrain, “ladybugs, ladybugs lend a hand.” A wonderful bop. I haven’t been able to crack the code of it so that it works for me yet. Someday. I may use this as a mentor text. And, yay! for poetry swap beauties. Jone’s notebooks are a work of art. I love the open door message!

  5. Fabulous! I think I could jump rope to “ladybugs, ladybugs lend a hand.” 🙂

  6. maryleehahn says:

    I was wondering why your milkweed looked so healthy and CLEAN. Then your poem told me why. I applaud your dedication. I started trying to keep the aphids washed off (one of my swamp milkweed plants had it the worst), but then found some monarch caterpillars and was worried I would wash them off, too, in my rush to eradicate the aphids. So I mostly just let nature take her course. Lo and behold, the aphids are mostly gone now, and the milkweed is putting up new leaves for the late-to-come monarchs!

    EXCELLENT bop! Love your refrain!

  7. Karen Edmisten says:

    I hope the ladybugs did indeed lend a hand! And what a treasure from Jone. ❤️

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