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last night I was the wolf
by kathryn magendie

Last night I was the wolf. I crawled from my special hiding place, and sniffed the wind. There, to the south, I took in my brothers, and to the west, my offspring. And all was well. I loped through the woods, the grass feathered against my legs, and the rocks cooling in the moon glow. Up ahead, I sense prey, but I am not hungry for meat. I sniff the air again and paw at the ground, my restless nature rising full and wanting and ancient.

Running faster, and up up up the mountain I climb. Once at the top, upon a massive rock that has seen the edge of time and felt the bitter and the forgiving wind, has seen the steps of my ancestors, has withstood all the assaults of time and space...on that beautiful rock I stood and lifted my snout into the air.

And I howled, long and low and restless and full full of want. I howled to old man moon, I howled to the town below, whose lights were dimmed and sleeping. I howled to the ones I love, and the ones I lost.

Then, when I was spent, when the howl left me hoarse and empty, I turned, bid farewell to the rock of ancient times, and I ran, faster than I had ever run before, back to my hiding place, before the first curls of red and orange and yellow could herald in a new day, before I would be seen and questioned.And I curled up, round like eternity, and I fell into sleep, deep and hard and without want.

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