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Megan Gannon – Ⅱ

First Defense 





Suddenly everything

had a word.  Each day

he led a new beast

by the scruff

or muzzle, each name

blossomed my throat

like scented air.  Tortoise,

mouse, horse, hare.

He’d found a way

of living

with absence– a sound

to summon the beast

when the beast wasn’t

there.  How long,

with the sun only


skin and breath

without a word hard

to swallow, could I

last without something

similar to give?  I only

wanted him to know

distance and emptiness

answered, to show

how every word consumed

hollows wider

at the core so soon

the only thing you have

to spare is hunger.