Tavye Neese




Cradle Song

Oh, the world is soft now.
Oh, the world is only a pillow.

Sleep and dream of feathers,

unplucked, the rhythm

of hooves before the knife
rests against their throats.

Close your eyes with no worry
over who is sniffing out

your pale femurs and breath.

I will never tell you
how dry the iris can become

searching all hours of the night
for fang, sharp fingers,

even from lovers,

and what turns us gray
at the temples is our desire

of antlers.

Oh, the world is soft now.
Oh, the world is only a pillow,

and the man who fells the last gold stag

does so only out of hunger.