Taxidermy
Wendy Neale Merry

 

Cary Grant chose the skinny side of our lake and that’s just fine. He says he prefers the private weather and anyway his lodge is polite to our lodge. Up here, we skulk moose and oxen and mule deer sixteen hands across.

Cary Grant is three fingers across in North by Northwest. There are no TVs in loch country and thank goodness, because otherwise Cary Grant would have to watch himself constantly. Instead he dries dishes and fries up whatever bounced out of the lake that day. I imagine, how awkward, a 65 year old Cary Grant observing a 35 year old Cary Grant and having to explain a thing or two. My uncle still talks about the buck he snipered last month during the bold season; a ‘perfect specimen,’ he says, the sunlight just off of his lithe tendons, the suede of his shank. Less a death than a capture. And this is what is strange about Los Angeles, they say. The craftsmen on their haunches, the aerial views of so many hats. Note the tohikon they use for the eyes. With the right kind of storage you can keep any elk in your very own living room. Look at that swagger, lips rolled around a menthol; the face, so lifelike. After all this time ‘just as he was in spring,’ those elegant hands, that pillow talk drawl, the soft, easy ring of buckshot.

 

Wendy Neale Merry is a poet, essayist and former semi-professional figure skater from California. Her writing has appeared in or is forthcoming in NANO Fiction, Spork, Hobart, Dossier Journal, and others. She lives in downtown Manhattan where she manages a collective of street artists. Read more of her work here.