Chimera

By Vievee Francis

She’s not “maternal,” she’s dangerous.

—Jamaal May

I have no charms. Admittedly.
No gold comb can move through
This mane. My skin is not translucent.
Mine is a tail to fear. I know.
And though a mother may destroy,
She too sees fit to create beauty
That would eventually grow into forms
I would swallow if I gave in
To my hungers. But, up from my wounds—
From this goat’s body—
Up from my wood-smoke lungs, from
The milk of me, comes a song, a melody
To open yours, then lick them clean.