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Shane McCrae

The Werewolf

for D. A. Powell



The question is     I ask myself most often is


Not what is it     to be a wolf     but what is it


To be a human




being how fragile if to be


even a quarter     / Wolf is to be


All wolf and not a human being at all     / To




what is the


most basic human thing     / Imaginable just


to hold a     cup to hold it after coffee     empty     thinking often soon




I wonder     / Whether a human being


would have already set it down


And hold it wondering



And in this way I leave my body     wondering through the cup


And it     the cup


becomes the source of my     / Anxiety




and also my relief     / Please


don’t misunderstand me


I kill people     / I’m not ashamed




I buy my coffee and I do not smile     / And with the first sip


dip my fangs in it     and the usually still


fresh blood mixes with the coffee then




Then I might grin at strangers     men my age     / Only a grin


I hide     yet I’m afraid     I’ll be acknowledged / And still I won’t be seen


Many of the men smile




And those I kill I tell them


how I came to be a wolf


My father was a man




my mother / Lived as a woman


Their parents were a man and women


but my mother’s father was a wolf     / So




I’m a wolf


as my / Children would be     / How can it be


I ask the men




I’m not a human being     at all


I am     a quarter what I am


Three-quarters what I kill

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