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:: Tuesday, April 20, 2004 ::


:: Alison 4/20/2004 12:37:00 PM [+] ::
...
Paul--

As per your instructions . . .

Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Jackalope

1
At a tag sale, rising from a hammock sea
with a dartboard star behind it,
the jackalope sticks its arms out: Mama.

2
Jackalopes in the wild, you never spot them.
They’re still, like anthills,
and move only when the tumbleweed shivers.

3
This one’s taller than all my books,
so I stand it on the curio shelf
next to the Blue Bird of Happiness.
Almost. It almost looks right.

4
Any taxidermist can tell you
how to make a dead thing
look alive. It’s all about
choosing the right horns for the job.

5
The strangest thing.—
Rather than lucky sevens at the slot machine
I see jackalope, jackalope, jackalope.

6
Windchimes bellow in the side yard.
The motion lights click on, but spot nothing.

7
There’s the tale of the wolverine’s disguise—
antlers fashioned from branches.
It crept to the watering hole
without spooking a single antelope.

8
In another story, the carnivore’s horns
are made of wax, and they melt
when it huddles too close to the fire.

9
Jackalope is hungry.
My sons offer it grilled cheese and cat food.

10
The startled-looking shoulder mount,
the coonskin cap and tail-feather jewelry . . . .
Something in the hardware store
reminds me of home.

11
Postcard from Wyoming:
St. Francis of Assisi bushwhacking through the forest
on the back of a godzilla jackalope.

12
Jackalope wears dust like an outlaw’s vest.
Spiders frame bizarre webs on his antlers.
Still, he needs something—
either fangs or a boutonniere.

13
Those pine trees you see
buffing the moon with paintbrush shadows—
look again.



:: Alison 4/20/2004 12:32:00 PM [+] ::
...

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