“I am remarkably like an animal.”
• Rachel Zucker
I have tied bells to my haunches,
have let appetite strip me down
to the fur. Base & primeval, I have
licked blood and lapped punishment
like cream. I will take your hand
if you offer no other death. I will
follow your golden string if you lead
me. I am not infallible. I like a man
best on his knees and cowering.
I like a woman just out of reach, a glimmer
in the corner of my dead right eye.
When I say I am ruthless, I mean I am
so like my mother. Horns curl just
beneath my hair. Bone breaches
Kathryn Bratt-Pfotenhauer is a poet from Maryland. Their work has previously been published or is forthcoming in Grist, Memorious, The Roanoke Review, Glass, and L’Éphémère Review. They were a poetry semifinalist for the 2017 St. Lawrence Book Award and the 2019 and 2020 recipient of the Bryn Mawr Bain-Swiggett Poetry Prize.