ad you left
me alive, I would have killed
a rabbit for my pleasure.

Our proportion of skeleton to fur
would make me sure at least
of being animate.

The pelt, dead and bristling,
might guard me from death,
a city wet with the rain of better places.

Rubbing the skin so hard into my skin,
it would have been the gentlest thing.
It would have been a better brain.

My vanishing is a meadow
and I know my kill still moves
more or less disturbed,

every leap blowing the shell
off my deformed blue-lipped bud.

I would work myself into the dirt if I could stay.


Elizabeth Metzger

Elizabeth Metzger is an MFA candidate at Columbia University, where she also teaches writing. She received the 2013 Narrative Magazine Poetry Prize, and her poems have recently appeared or are forthcoming in Narrative, The Los Angeles Review, The Common, Tongue: A Journal of Writing & Art, and H.O.W. Young Poets. She lives in New York and is an assistant poetry editor of the Los Angeles Review of Books.