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The Isaiah 34 Animals of Desolation, in a Barnes & Noble

Published on:
January 27, 2020
Read time:
1 min.
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I plodded to the papery
haven on a cold, frosted
morning. 

A hawk sat there. Clawed atop the store’s
serifed letters. He surveyed the world through
 my face, then dove for something defenseless
behind me. 

A porcupine waddled between my feet as
I walked into the foyer. I wanted to follow
it, but his quills tensed. 

An owl conversed with a raven in bird
yell, but when I approached the shelf
they sat upon, they both fell silent, eyed
me beadily. 

A jackal narrowed his eyes as he growled in
the children’s section. He slapped Goodnight,
Moon
off the shelf with his paw. 

A hyena and his pack shrieked in
laughter finding the aroma of
vulnerability in the Self-Help
section. 

The wild goat nibbled,
chewed, ate furniture and
startled people out of their
chairs. 

The jackal, however, zoned in on a toddler
eating a scone in the café. He snarled and
snapped, teeth bared and sharp. 

The child looked upon it, scolded, “No!” in a
gentle but powerful voice, tapped the jackal’s
snout. It sat in obedience. 

Celinda Olive
Celinda Olive is a poet living in the Minneapolis area with her husband. In her writing she often explores how grit and beauty intersect in the life of faith, and how the ancient and the modern often collide together. She has words previously published in Rock & Sling, and forthcoming in Pomme Journal. You can follow her on Twitter (@celindaolive1) and visit her blog: cellyc.wordpress.com.

Cover image by Rumman Amin.

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