animals, we

Thank you for the freedom to air out

the stench in every room

you slept in, unwanted. 

Thank you for the lesson that

some fears are founded; I can count

on one hand the number of friends you have

who have not deemed you dead already, so

I choose to be more selective

with my secrets. 

Thank you for the cautionary tale of

why we never invest in sounds outside our window

because boys will leave you broken

and broke

and borrow something new. 

I never met a lie of yours I didn’t like. 

I never met a facade you built that wasn’t cellophane. 

I never saw a house you could honestly say wasn’t already on fire. 

My eyes are open,

and everyone sees what you grew into. 

Is this how you imagined your life? 

Elemental acid like a lab safety poster,

detailing the agonies you become when

exposed

to air? 

I have no hope for you, no love lost, no gold lockets, no high school locker photo collages,

you are a PR dream of illusory promises in print, 

you are an agent’s nightmare of inability to even fake talent. 

and animals, we

smell fear. we

wait in grass that you

sowed the seeds of. 

no threat, just nature,

just what you nurtured,

four fingers pointing back at your tomb when one is raised in defense. 

I am no longer an angry animal. 

I am the ground that swallows corpses. 

I am floral and fauna feasted. 

I see everything. 

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