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love in a time before evolution caught up with us

Jane Flett (2016)

Remember when we were birds?

No, wait. Before that.

When we were snakes, slitherers, creep-crawlers hobbity-gobbling on our stumps?

 

Cast your mind back,

back-back-back chicken feet,

to a time before ghosts (for the ghosts

are just reflections of things already gone.)

 

To when we first met.

To when we were windgrit.

Or further.

 

Let’s hold hands as the things we were before the arms/the legs/the form

kiss as bits snagged on the air as the stump and gash orchestra the caterwaul of hacked bassoons.

 

Back then, we were still looking for the shapes that would make us.

We were movement, ever-on-on-onward, aimed roughly at a future

we hadn’t heard of yet.

 

We hadn’t heard of hands either.

We didn’t know that shrieks weren’t limbs.

 

Let’s go there. I want to

sink our pre-claws into fore-dashes &

wriggle in the atomic splash.

 

And if we’re close enough, when it happens, we’ll know how to cross

what will soon become skin.

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