Flesh

she called me at three in the morning and told me
about meat
venison   the wild taste still leaping
off her tongue. she said she needed meat
she was poor

her boyfriend shot the deer
hung it
dripping in her shed   she gave her flesh
in exchange or ate his
though she gagged
when she said this   she said i couldn’t
understand

then she moaned
and the moan became a shriek
so loud i pulled the phone away   shocked and
wondering at her metaphors for flesh
i hung up gently as i could.

when she called again her voice was ten years old
she said her father had been
a hunter who returned to her mother
every thanksgiving  drunk and
triumphant. a four point buck strapped
to the old red dodge

when they became lost in their
screaming she would steal secretly back
to the buck    slide between
the great thighs where the fur was
soft    the flesh still warm
and safe…

she wept for a minute after confessing
then her breath slipped away and
the phone was dead.

i never knew her name.

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