Wolf

Ash Bowen

Caused by a deletion of chromosome 4, Ulrich Wolf Syndrome produces death in the bulk of children born with it.
          —rarediseases.com

I’ve sweated through the panting night.

I prowl the hills above the house
where you’ve hidden our daughter
from the fangs

of my DNA, the chemistry
firing this bloodstream.

Something signals me
to skulk the pasture with the soft paw
of the body, to snap the hasp
and climb inside the kitchen window.

A wolf’s no scavenger.
Hunger licks its tongue
across the danger of my teeth.

I snuffle after our daughter’s scent
rising like a light below a door
in a darkened hallway.

I’ve sharpened my claws on the black night
of the kitchen. The moon’s burning out
in the bottom of my bowl.

Our daughter’s so little,
I could swallow her whole.

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