A bowl of halved canned pears,
pale toad backs sulking in syrup,
and a history show on television—
sheepishly entering the classroom
late as a barbarian by a roaring
fire explains his culture—voice
measured as his red curls unruly.
As the smudged face continues
discussing the main economic
staples and seasonal migrations,
the gnawed turkey leg grows
more and more sadly absent.
Bring back the bone and growl!
blue vein stuck in the blood
matted teeth. Anything but
these polite, controlled tones.
This killing half meant kindness.
Jenn Blair’s work has been published or is forthcoming in Copper Nickel, the Tulane Review, Rattle, Berkley Poetry Review, South Carolina Review, Chattahoochee Review, Appalachian Review, Kenyon Review, and the Montreal Review among others. The author of the poetry chapbook The Sheep Stealer (Hyacinth Girl Press), her poetry book Malcontent is out from Press Americana and her poetry book Face Cut Out For Locket is forthcoming from Brick Road Poetry Press.