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"Arctic Killer"- from The Ruby of the Universe - Dan Lukiv

this poem is from The Ruby of the Universe. The title is taken from a line in the final poem, and all of them explore themes related to war. click here to read the others.


Arctic Killer

Polar bear:
Hiding,
With a paw,
Your black nose
(Ingenious)
As you stalk prey.
You're eidolic,
A Portuguese man-of-war,
To the flesh
You eat.

Photographer-pilots
"Captured" you
In your white desert:
Click.
But you,
In an 8 by 10 paradox,
Weren't there,
Like a Hollywood vampire
Without a virtual
Image.

Even infrared fails
To capture you
Who,
Like a black hole,
Harvests solar heat
That black skin
Absorbs.

Ultraviolet film
Exposes you:
A great,
Black amoeba,
As unphotogenic as
The small,
White seals
(They too are
Heat-absorbing miracles)
That you eat.

You stalk men--
You,
The most beautiful
Of all bears
(Some say)--
Just as Nimrod
Stalked men
In war-play.

In a zoo-cage
You're adored
By awe-struck children
("He's so cute!"),

But in the wild,
Face to face,
You're a gargoyle
With teeth
That kill.


Dan Lukiv is a writer, educator, and frequent contributor to canadian content.
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