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MacQueen’s Quinterly: Knock-your-socks-off Art and Literature
Issue 13: May 2022
Poem: 73 words
By Cynthia Anderson

Animals

—After the painting by Rufino Tamayo1
We humans see ourselves in animals;
animals do not see themselves in humans.

—Octavio Paz2
 
Nostrils bristling, 
they prowl among 
blue bones gnawed clean 
in a pool of blood. 
They know there’s more 
where that came from. 
Bred to it, born to it, 
they revel as teeth 
rip into flesh. 
It’s too late. 
No one is safe. 
Cry havoc 
for all the bark 
has turned bite. 

 

 

Publisher’s Notes:

1. Animals (oil on canvas, 1941) by Mexican painter Rufino Tamayo (1899–1991) resides at MoMA (Museum of Modern Art) in New York City. View the painting at MoMA online.

To learn more about Tamayo, see also A Mexican Painter Changed by the City, Changes Art by Roger Catlin in Smithsonian Magazine (27 November 2017).

2. Epigraph is from “At Table and in Bed,” an essay by Octavio Paz in Convergences: Essays on Art and Literature, translated from the Spanish by Helen Lane (Harcourt Brace Jovanovich: New York, 1987).

Cynthia Anderson
Issue 13, May 2022

A California resident and poet for more than 40 years, Cynthia Anderson is the author of eleven books, most recently a collection of haiku and senryu entitled Full Circle (Cholla Needles, 2022). Her poems have been published widely in journals and anthologies, and she has received multiple nominations for Best of the Net and the Pushcart Prize. In 2020, she took up short-form poetry including haiku, senryu, cherita, haibun, and split sequences. Her recent work focuses on the natural world and her family history.

Cynthia is co-editor of the anthology A Bird Black As the Sun: California Poets on Crows & Ravens (Green Poet Press). She makes her home in the Mojave Desert near Joshua Tree National Park.

Author’s website: www.cynthiaandersonpoet.com

More on the Web: By, About, and Beyond

Formerly Known as Ion, haibun by Cynthia Anderson which was nominated by MacQ for the Red Moon Anthologies, and selected for publication in Contemporary Haibun 17 (Red Moon Press, 2022).

 
 
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