Poetry: Becoming Animal by Gnaomi Siemens

“The wind wants what the bird wants,” writes Gnaomi Siemens in “Becoming Animal, and reminds us how close we are to nature; we are only a ravine, a wind, a falling away from becoming less human, giving into the desires of ourselves. We become animal.


Becoming Animal

Between me and the bird
something breathes.

I jumped
and fell
fast and slow
at once.

Someone I had yet to meet had
made a covenant with the air.

Ravine close over me.
Your voice,

cave song, in a shell
at the ear of a giant.


Still falling,
adjusting my outfit.

Getting it right
right charcoal leather.

White dress
best against a grey sky.

Boots saddle-cinched.

Each wardrobe change
a digital glitch

Large sea-bird, wings curved,
an easy mount and merge.

Carved out from the cliff, the crescent,
elegant spiral,


Watch cap works for an eye.

Legs wrap around belly,
dissolve in.

The wind wants what the bird wants.

Keeps us at sea
for a second.

In the morning, the sun

had become

the color of the last coral.


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