The Maynard
Spring 2016

Rachel Jansen

She, animal

When I sweat do I change
or become more myself
I climb mountains scoop thoughts
from my mind feel
them melt sublimate settle into primate
I push upwards also to press my body against
humanity feel the barrier and back away
who is this person I see in mirrors
and label I sometimes I see animal
sometimes girl I turn my head and
she’s lines and shadows nothing of the two
who do my thoughts belong to
where will they go when her body becomes
cotton batting under rain when beetles chew
on strings of ligaments God says she’s better
than animal but I don’t believe in God
and what does it mean that male bears
grasp hind-ends of females with forceful claws
for sex what does it mean the reverse of God
is animal am I wild is she wild
how do I know that what I see is who I am
how do I know what animals see
when they see themselves
I saw a leopard once stalking
in the Amazon she chuffed and the river split
where she dragged her kill
she stopped to watch me.