In Which Coyote Slums as a Cactus

by Megan Grumbling

Entreated with white limbs and gall, he came
late, the next morning, glutton that he is
for irony, false maidens. Choose your form,
I’d called the night before, prone in my warm
desert floor bedroll, wanton for a god,
even, especially, a tricky one,
but go deep. No doubt he’d already schemed
just what I would receive, how I’d drag feet
from sleep unvisited, trying to shrug
his spurn, how naught but stumbling would arouse

the taking: How he’d finally enter me
as twenty inchlong cholla quills, bloodthrust
through my white thigh. I knew him right away,
of course, his smirked perversion, such a rash
and slapstick ravaging. Brought low, I flushed
with chastening, outwitted, more beguiled
than dreamt, and was so taught humility
an eros. Later, when I filled my pouch
with creosote, I slipped one bloodied quill
in, too. Seemed I had been asking for it.