The next one waits, polishing its incisors.
What willing thing would venture near, barefoot?
Some days, it doesn’t know itself
whether it preys or punishes. Or both.
Meanwhile, another clips earrings to her lobes.
She uses the pain to remind herself
of her worthiness. Please watch,
her ministrations seem to say.
Lifted to the level of her smile, each pearl ignites.
She draws the fur onto her shoulders
and against her neck. Outside, the moon
shows paw prints circling in the snow.