We switch places at the edge of town.
The guy gives me his hat and his boots,
and I tell him how to find his way back into the woods,
to the stream and the rock that I like to sleep on,
and where all the best she-bears have been lately.
And is he good at catching deer?
He hasn’t caught deer before, he says.
But yeah, sure—how hard could it be?
I tell him the trick is to surprise them:
thunder from the bushes, boom—one big smack.
I get into his slick car and roll it into town,
to his condo behind its tall gates,
to his home where his kids are mine;
his wife Charlotte is my wife now.
She is honeysweet on the lips
and if what I am is obvious to her
once I take my hat and boots off,
she doesn’t say.
Sara Cordova lives in New Mexico, where she works as a marketing specialist and consultant. This is her first publication.
Editor’s Notes: A creative piece of black humor, this first person narrative from the perspective of the bear was captured symbolically in the accompanying artwork— overlaid images of a man’s silhouette in “spirit bear”: Does the white man know who is right if the Indian says his great grandfather was a bear, and the white man says his great grandfather was a monkey? (Chief Flying Hawk)