Taxidermy Deer

I stand behind thick glass, forever watching with peculiar lacquered eyes. Hooves (worn down from miles of walking) lay beneath me as I stand motionless in an artificial exhibit. My skin seems thick as with all wild things, but it is thin and delicate, an encasing of layered worn silk. Upon my bowed head rests a diadem of ossified branches barren of the foliaceous masses often collocated with extended arboreal arms. On the outside I am the product of organic birth, but internally I am adorned with many jewels gifted by unknowing patrons. I am stuffed to the neck with cut emeralds, raw opal, blazing diamonds; jewels cushioned by borrowed owls' down. As each owl feather appears, a cygnet's plumage which once lined my hollowed cavaties disapears.

The people outside stare. I stare back. My eyes are a deep black, pools of the sea's abysmal waters where life is strange and lightless. My eyes are all pupils, they see all, they are unfocused. Kids press their faces to the glass, daring me to move, to shriek. My jaw was wired shut by a skilled taxidermist, my face frozen beneath the branching antlers. I must express myself in different ways; an imposing set of antlers juxtaposed with a doleful stance. Although I am motionless and silent I am very much alive behind the glass. And so I stand, a still wild deer, watching the world spin past.