OXIDANT | ENGINE : Issue 10

Alyse Knorr

Wolf Tours: Rules

                         

please / keep your hands and arms / inside the tour / at all times

photography / not permitted / flash / permitted

please / do not / not eat / on / the tour

if you / at any point/ become deceased / remember to / please / dispose of it / accordingly

under no / circumstances / must you / begin to run / running however / is allowed

please howl / only / like this

if furrowed in the night / you dream a wolf dream / please / report it / to the dream superintendent

when you find yourself / afraid / to return / to reality / please / thank us

for the safety / of our community / we ask you / please / and we ask you / again

Wolf Tours: Lost and Found Policies
 

We donate items monthly to

              our flea market, which doubles as

our flea circus, one of our main

              attractions. Our ringmaster wears

the hats and jackets of the missing.     

              Our clowns photo the crowd

with unclaimed cameras and selfie

              sticks. Come and see the elephants;

come and see the fleas. Come to

              find your selfie: if your name

is marked on the item, that means

              you have a name. Sincerity finds itself in

the definition of utterance: if

              I no longer love you, I can no longer

speak at all. We don’t like cats,

              but we still feed the tigers at 10—

can you say the same for yourself?

              The belly dancers and the acrobats,

the barrel of umbrellas grown

              moldy or rusty or both. The thin

tent wall between to wound and

              to be wounded. Do you remember

I have a name? The dancing bears

              want to know what no one returns

to re-claim, what no one realizes

              they’ve lost. Our mothballs are big as

houses. And I once had a name of my own.

Alyse Knorr is an assistant professor of English at Regis University and, since 2017, co-editor of Switchback Books. Her most recent book of poems, Mega-City Redux, won the 2016 Green Mountains Review Poetry Prize, selected by Olena Kalytiak Davis. She is also the author of the poetry collections Copper Mother (Switchback Books 2016) and Annotated Glass (Furniture Press Books 2013); the non-fiction book Super Mario Bros. 3 (Boss Fight Books 2016); and the poetry chapbooks Ballast (Seven Kitchens Press 2019), Epithalamia (Horse Less Press 2015), and Alternates (dancing girl press 2014).