A Man Eater in the Village
Man Eater Terrorizes the Village
How with this rage shall beauty hold a plea?
Shakespeare, Sonnet LXV
She smelled the man in the oils of her skin mingling with the smell
of the same man’s dried blood on her snout and the stink of the wound
dealt by the thing she digested, the thing which once had been a man.
The pain was less trenchant, burned less, than the exhaustion it caused.
Ache had begun to vex the joint, weakening her technique against beasts.
If she could only snap as quick as the man’s lead stick,
stopping forever in the flesh like its smooth black tooth.
Already she was on the trail of another, younger, one less sour,
yet still carrying a proclivity for sourness by nature of his species.
The first tasted of the boar he stole from her, but when she ate his meat
she did not relish it.She fed but was not sated by the meal. Not for hunger
nor for revenge.
Primordial desire had merged one into the other- and by evolving,
neither could be filled. The scent of him on her snout worsened
her rage and made the hunger worse too.
It wanted her, but not to feed on. The man wanted to take her shape, to wear it, or to keep in the sharp dark and sweet abode containing other dead things that had also not been eaten. Man is an unnatural killer.
And so it came…
Revenge would be executed on the shoulders of those he resembled.
The DNA itself was due for threatening to replicate an entity
whose living disrupted the forest’s order: Her forest.
What desire’s fangs do to the flesh, the tiger does.
She circled the cabin. Circling, she chewed his structure to splinters and marked the surrounding trees with ringlets of piss –Dismembering totally the objects bearing the most offensive stenches, objects dusted with flakes of his horrible skin and broken hair. She dragged his mattress from the ruins to a snow drift concealed 100 yards off. She rested there, to watch, to lick the wound consuming her foreleg. The overbearing scent of him.
At dusk, a shadow returned from the forest like a beanstalk staggering under the moon. A young hunter loped towards the clearing where his cabin was put asunder at center. A glittering trail in the snow stole away from the pieces. He followed with his eyes and at its end, spotted her.
Sprawled in bed, she lay observing him with golden eyes.
He saw she was skinny, spitting, and dirty; Bronze buds
festered on the mattress beneath her flame-colored body;
like the milk tongue of an oyster or an oil spill.
He cocked his wand to his eye, misfiring,
as she sprang and dragged him back to bed
to eat with blood blooming in her teeth.
She left him bones and clothes in the snow;
a bridal wreath at her feet.
The story of cats is a story of meat