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Preserving the hunted from the automated

Jill Beauchesne

My arms begin to itch, odd sensation
seemingly in tune with the radio ad.
I look down my torso. Slowly,
my shoulders cajole my belly to meet.
Carefully, my jaw and ears lengthen.
I hear the sounds of both of you, miles down the road,
rifles cocked near the creek. “High noon,” you whisper.
“Several minutes,” you reply. I scratch
my underarm with a leg, impatiently. That driver’s side window
solid only for a second, before glass and protruding metal
shatter across the only road I’ll ever remember,
and my body is an outline at the wheel. Blood
on the dashboard, new wealth in my legs.

The she-wolf stands precious. The she-wolf senses the pressure,
but cannot open the well. If she will win
depends on the sun’s inlay in the birch.
How the day rests unsettled, unsure of its catch.

Jill Beauchesne

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