from Temazcal: The Steam House Chronicles

For the past three years,

a grandmother silverback

has been stalking me.

My death has been stalking me.

My death is a wolf.

The first year, I knew she was close

because of the wind.

A strong, unmistakable musk wafted in.

My death has been stalking me.

My death is a wolf.

She doesn’t like it that I know she’s there.

Lately, I’ve gotten into the habit of tricking her.

I turn around mid-step

and that’s when I catch a glimpse.

She moves behind the trees

but tries to keep her eyes on me.

On days I feel no fear, I run straight at her.

She scampers off for a few weeks

until she circles back around.

My death has been stalking me.

My death is a wolf.

Last night, I felt her hot breath on the back of my neck;

a reminder that no matter where I go

or what I may manage to do,

she will eventually have the upper hand.

In the end, she will free the spirit inside me

by feasting on what is left of the man.


(c) 2019 / Frank LaRue Owen / purelandpoetry.com

sound: Melting World / Earth Island / Suspended Memories (Steve Roach, Jorge Reyes, Suso Saiz)

image: Neil Rosenstech / Sunshine Village, Banff, Canada

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