Taxidermy wolf melts into rug

spine fails
when its made to hold you up strong.

The boy told me

he said
this wolf
he loves America
he wears and breathes America,

I point out his shell hands
with Uncle Sam’s fingernails sharpened to a lethal point.

The girl told me

she said
this jewelry is so beautiful
the women they wear it with their long dark braids
and make music with its whistles

I say yes
it is beautiful
but the wood is dark
and the women
they make music when bears touch them like salmon