The Wolf Trap
The Wolf Trap: A Love Story
by Monique Quintana
The Generales seized the letter from wolf’s mouth when tried she to run it across the railroad tracks. She had one paw across the tracks and they stopped her. The hospital on the other side was teeming with life. Its windows glinting under shaking birds and treescapes. Santa Muerte’s statue swung in the hospital’s garden, but wolf could only see the top of her head, robed in smoke. Pink and burning. The letter. The girl wrote the boy’s name in bright blue ink and it looked like her veins on the flap.
Like the veins in the hand. The altar boy ran his fingers over her blue green lines as they kissed under the stained glass windows of the hospital chapel, Xquic blessed, like spit in her hand. Their love made gods. The chapel, a secret. And when the tiny boys saw her, they ran at her like water, pointing at the girl with their fingers, their mouths in Os, they ran her from the chapel, the gold of their gowns like the flapping of wings.
The letter, gone. Her paw, a wound. Wound enough to keep her from crossing. She found the cool of a tree, its roots thumbing her belly. The pain had gone from fire, to a light, to a flicker flame in her paw, her claws curved under like moons. If only it was there, a cool moon for her, but instead, she saw sunlight, a gown. A blue hospital gown, the sterile glove of the earth, shading her eyes, blood grey with dirt and she waited for cold steps on stone, for fur to come and grow back again.