Bestiary for the End Times

Animals came from over the horizon  
(after John Berger)
Why look at these animals now?
These animals’ lives are secrets
burned away so that only vague shapes remain
puzzle pieces in driftwood, charred and floating
In their lives some were tiny as spores
under the peeled paint of a windowsill
others large as comets
standing for decades beside the moon
a constant seeming star.
As they began to leave us
some animals grew distant
and in their distance they made us taste our hatefulness.
Others drew too close
and reminded us of our failures,
too many to count.
However we were, the animals began to disappear
and their disappearance
is everywhere with us.
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