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Castor Gulo (poem of a beaver becoming a wolverine)

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          This one
                    has teeth that grow ceaselessly in the dark
          of the bank’s hollow lodge This one
scents blood packed into the far reach of winter
                    blind kits latched to the milk–
          warm underbelly mudpacked life
ice breathes with claws can’t rest in
                    thoughts of slick greenoiled grass the sap
          of spring cycling through the mind’s in
satiable appetite meat fat a path
                    scratched into the arched ceiling of the skull
          by the calcium bite of their suckling she senses them
gnawed in beneath the snowpack belly taut from hours
                    of sleep and dreams unbroken a scab of frost
          at the mouth of a winter’s cache
tearing over land without pause or scrap
                    to keep the spirit housed
          the edges are ragged as claws
or a snapped bone sucked hollow in the bloodied snow
                    wrapped in mud and sticks muscle and fur to become
          undone in this month of need
loosed in the hard and final air
                    a tear and scream unworldly fused
          to beat upon the opened ground without form
swallowing whole the pulse of this being
                    this being becoming again in the flesh
          in the belly of the lodge torn open
this being its muzzle thrust into its belly this
          being this being this one

fn0. 2nd Prize, Poem of the Year Contest 2006
_Arc_ 57, Winter 2006