I love all living things.
I love the gentle rise and fall of the lung cavity
When a moving organism pulls air into its entity
And the slow release of the same quantity which has been robbed.
I love the protective wild boar which will charge to defend,
I love the porcupine with its coat of quills,
And still, even were it to release one into my flesh.
I love the nearly monogamous seahorse,
So close to human beings in its lack of ability, no, ability
To be with one and only one.
I love its mystical beauty and
Its ignorance thereof as it
dances in the currents
The way it danced on the
Backward facing mirror of the
Unhappy driver who I loved
But did not love me back and was
Hanging, tangling, dangling from a
Line those equine creatures like
trophies of his culture.
He cannot change the events which led
To where he is now
To where he stopped for me by the pavement I was on
And when I noticed those dead dried hippocampus
prancing about in my line of sight like they wished they were alive.
He cannot help who he is now
And the beliefs which carved him.
But he can make different choices.
I saw him in a Traditional Chinese Medicine store
Just the day before
When the shopkeeper said in Mandarin
“This will do it.”
And he believed in the way of his forefathers
Unable to break the cycle
And he hung those seahorses from that mirror
Before getting round to the grinding
And the procurement of
That endangered magical powder which would solve everything.
These trophies, these emblems of lack of knowledge and love of knowing
About the same breathing things that I love and how they were
taking a breath then releasing their last caused
How could I love this man?
This man who did not understand how to love?
This man who did not love other animals?
Yet how can I claim to love other animals when
I am not impassioned enough to not
Have them on my plate
And pierce them with my fork
Cut them open with my knife and
Slice through their cooked skin which does not move with
Without that gentle rise and fall which was so reflective of
My certain exclamation
With which I began?
I am a liar
A loving liar but
A liar no less and I should be condemned
For my inadequacies
And my disabled realism which persuades me
That I can and cannot say no
To that once alive piece of____ in front of me
Which I used to love but love no more
Because it was alive, and I have killed it.
And every time I do it, it is still my choice.