Christopher Stein

Like white-tailed deer,
my fears gather at the edge
of the disturbed forest
and multiply.

There they keep copulating,
keep keeping one another alive.

Like the police in my hometown,
I hold a controlled hunt.
Each late autumn:

I string myself up
in the trees and hang heavily
like an overripe peach. I burst
with fire that fells my fears,
one by one and two by two.

In spring, somehow,
they are back.