Anna Schechter - Classification

Am I a repetition? What’s the difference

between the Coccinella septempunctata and the Harmonia axyridis?

One means luck, the other infestation.

What separates the lady and the bug?

Not even a hyphen.


I’m hyphenate, middled.

I remain larval, hesitant to pupate.

Taxonomy stops me.

How far from Kingdom must I go?

Genus is more specific than family but more general than species. Shouldn’t


family be last?

Omniscient? The inescapable? The most telling?

Family seems to me the bottom-out, where the chart cinches, hourglassed.

That little funnel where the answers are supposed to make themselves

Latinate and italicized, known. Where I’m to be told: I am what we are.


That’s why I pause, cautious to cycle

Again all we’ve done. All we are.

Do you portend me every time?

Classify me, please, I need to know, but also

Let me remain.


Edited by Jamie Chen (@bjorqcute)

ANNA SCHECHTER is senior at Sarah Lawrence College, where she studies writing and literature. Her work has been published by The SLC Review, love and squalor magazine, and The Isis Magazine. Last spring, she was awarded proxime accessit winner of Wadham College’s Rex Warner Prize for her short story “The Swap”. You can usually find her walking her dogs or curled up with a book.

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