“This Girl” by Melissa Grossman
She carried a dead coyote to class,
this girl who kept to herself.
Roadkill in her car, she drove to school,
this girl, with thick, unkempt hair.
When she told the professor
of her desire to draw the dead animal,
he polled the other students.
The drawing class gathered
in the courtyard, seated
around the dead coyote,
sketch pads tilted, raspy sound
of charcoal on paper.
This was her moment, this girl
sitting nearest the corpse, to capture
the lifeless limbs, the dangling tongue,
the matted fur, the gray pallor.
Soon, the stench of decay
drove all away. She was
the last to leave, this girl,
who, this one day,
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Melissa Grossman’s Artist Statement: Melissa Grossman is an active member of Paradigm Poets in Los Angeles, CA. as well as a member of the Ventura County performance troupe, Razor Babes. As a member of The Almost Famous Poets, she brings poetry to the Ventura County Schools. Her poetry has been published in Common Ground Review, Askew, Kansas City Voices, the anthology In the Company of Women, and two Lucid Moose anthologies: Alleyways & Gutters: Poverty & Struggle and Like a Girl. Melissa is a stained glass and mosaic artist, living in Simi Valley with her beloved Golden Retriever, Molly.