We leave the Ruminal fig, its sticky fruit
clotting the fur of the she-wolf lowing
after us. Sickly sweet what she licks
from her paws. Flies, bees simmer above.
Beyond the dank, twilit zone of sleeping
bats: the dark we don’t seek to civilize,
the albino spiders who’ve no need of sight.
What lovelorn story will we tell
ourselves about the paw prints following
the foot prints: pet or predator?
Mother or fur coat to stroke in her absence?
J.K. DANIELS is the author of Wedding Pulls (Hub City Press, 2016), which was selected by C.D. Wright for the New Southern Voices Poetry Prize. Her poems have appeared in The New Orleans Review, Queer South, Calyx, Beltway Poetry Quarterly, and others.