If Only

I used to want to feel the pain from consuming, like an emaciated lion viewing a life-saving meal, peacefully sipping from a pond, unaware of the hunger, survival, desperation of the creature lurking behind her, ready to pounce.

Ready to pounce, without the energy to kill, weakened by days of walking aimlessly after a one-on-one battle with the new kid in town, the one that takes the pride by force, murders the cubs of the females so there are no complications, he’s free to force himself on them while they’re still mourning the loss of their blood.

I want to feel sorry for him, the one rejected, the one who lost the fight, but he took over the pride at one point, repeating cycles he’s currently on the tail end of, survival, carnal instinct to kill or be killed, eat or be eaten; if he doesn’t find the energy to pounce on his prey, break the neck with his jaws, a mortal wound, he will be fodder for vultures.

I used to want to feel the aftermath of consuming at such speed that my senses were numb and I could rest, full and fat, a euphoric high, albeit temporary, until I sought the high again, but now, I’m like the lion afraid to pounce, fatigued, burdened by past traumas, inflicted upon me and by me, I’ve rejected members of my pride as much as they’ve rejected me, I walk aimlessly, searching for renewal, forgiveness, acceptance, if not by a pride, at least a companion; we won’t have to take over territories or clean the slates of the past, we can just be together, forming new cycles of contentment, love, peace, and sip from the waters of a pond along with our former prey.

If only.

Emily Cloward © 2018

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