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Arts and Culture

The Telling Room: 'I Am Not Wild'

Courtesy: the Telling Room

Every Friday this summer, we're featuring the work of young writers in partnership with the Telling Room in Portland. This week's entry is "I am Not Wild" by Kaitlyn Knight.


Placed among faces

with which I’m acquainted,

I find a time

when I was wild in a pack.


The sun rested and lent

the earth to its cooling brother.

That blind eye looked down on

five wolves, females,

before our prime. 

The day was spent in celebration,

as was the night. Paws imprinted soft dirt.

Headlong we raced, young tongues lolling,

youthful eyes absorbing the moon-drowned road ahead.

Crouched behind bushes we lay in waiting.

We waited for the light-filled eyes of our prey,

speeding ever closer until our battle anthem rose behind us.

We charged, pelts glinting ethereal dances to the sky.

The car belted an energetic approval.

Startled by the noise, we fled, only to return to the hunt later.

We were not wolves.

Yet wild with our dim dances beside rural roads,

not to be remembered, nor found again.

Alone. Eyes glint only dimly,

darkened orbs that distract from keen teeth.

Precautioned people skirt left, right.

I crave only the life I live, with the moon and myself.

Being a wolf, pelt dancing. Being a girl, teeth clenched.

The original full-length version of "I am Not Wild" by Kaitlyn Knight is featured in the most recent anthology of the Telling Room in Portland, a non-profit writing center dedicated to the idea that children and young adults are natural story tellers.