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Just Your Average Thylacine

Benjamin, child
of Tasmanian Zoo and an older world,
you are skinny and striped, yawning,
spine at ease, enjoying
your reputation.  Small Killer
of Smaller Things, you are Rarity, Exception,
you never compete anymore, you’re the solitary
type, you don’t do anything but play,

you patter around your cage pretending
you’re a honey-bee, little black slashes
cupping your rear like a thick spring, sharp
nose and tail new, fresh to the Act
of stinging, familiar only with the idea, but
you’ll do it because you must
protect the Queen, the sweet –
that is the point of this game, to float around
a thing that remembers you, a thing in its big
scruffy home, with millions just like you,
also ready, dulcet et decorum est sometimes
to have a choice.

On just your average day, though, somebody
will lock you out, somebody not interested
in Dawning Consequence, and finally
the chill of exclusion will be too much,
you will see
it is quiet outside the Zoo.
Posted 08/20/09
Thylacines - Tasmanian Tigers - are extinct. and kind of cute. Benjamin was the last one and died of neglect in the Tasmanian Zoo.
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