Lamentation for the slaughter of elephants and rhinos
Because full moon is a white peony floating in the ocean’s glass bowl, because
elephant tusk is a crescent moon rocking on a poacher’s shoulders, because
tusk becomes an ivory comb in a woman’s upswept hair.
Because full moon is its own reflection in a koi pond, because
crescent moon is a carved pendant in night’s velvet box.
Because full moon is a white lotus floating in a lily-rimmed lake, because
crescent moon is a yellow horn cut from a rhino’s skull, because
rhino horn becomes a human skull on a teakwood table.
Because full moon is a paper lantern floating down the Niger, because
crescent moon smokes with mist like a charred animal bone.
Because full moon is a bridal pearl in veils of fragrant mist, because
crescent moon is a lotus-shaped shoe on a woman’s foot.
Because blood moon is a stuffed lion’s red-eyed stare, because
crescent moon is a curved taxidermy needle, because
moonless night is the scent of a herd murdered for ivory.
Because tusk becomes a pair of elephants on a rosewood bookshelf.