• Political Animals

    Rebecca Wolff

    Summer 2022

    I am of the 2%
    We do not speak casually to our pets
    Mine endure my silence
    They warble all day for food even though I feed them
    just fine—clearly they are looking
    for something else
    from me—humans call it love
    Psychologists call it attachment
    Relational psychologists call it relation.
    Today— . . . I am so sick of the structure given to me for telling
    my stories. It goes: I am here,
    sitting in a chair on a special day. It is finally getting cold out,
    winter 2017, when will people stop
    telling me it’s a beautiful day, it’s not beautiful if it’s poisoned.
    71 degrees in November. One black cat
    settles in my lap—this is not unusual, not
    a story worth the centering of my self. She
    is the little sister lap cat. Do you
    post pictures of your cats

    or dogs all day every day? Well
    then I un-follow you. Today
    I am sitting in a chair, having forced myself
    to stay here long enough for these creatures
    I live with
    to find me trust me experience time passing and me staying still. They
    only see me standing still when I am standing
    glued to my phone
    scrolling in a state
    of doped paralysis, you heard me,
    there’s nothing good going on there
    you are being drugged, roped
    and branded this is no joke. I am
    here in my chair to tell you.

    Rebecca Wolff is the author of four collections of poetry, most recently One Morning[Symbol] (Wave Books, 2015), and a novel, The Beginners (Riverhead Books, 2011). She is the editor of Fence, and lives in the Hudson Valley, where she is a fellow at the New York State Writers Institute at the University at Albany.

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