Black Petals Issue #76 Summer, 2016

Skin Walker
Mars-News, Views and Commentary
Anniversary-Fiction by A. M. Stickel
Flirting with the Alley-Fiction by Roy Dorman
Gone Astray-Fiction by Denis Bushlatov
Surviving Montezuma-Serialized Fiction by Kenneth James Crist
The Road-Fiction by Walter Kwiatkowski
The Watchers-Fiction by Mike Mulvihill
Honey Island Swamp Monster-Poem by Richard Stevenson
Skin Walker-Poem by Richard Stevenson
Ucu-Poem by Richard Stevenson

Skin Walker

Richard Stevenson


Coyote, wolf, deer, owl…

I choose the animal I need

to jump your rational fence.


You catch me by the roadside—

a coyote walking on his hind feet.

Look into my blood-red eyes.


I hypnotize you just long enough

to get back on all fours

and move beyond Cartesian lines.


You’ve got four dimensions—

width, height, length, time.

I’ve got five. Move through your


space-time coordinates

like water through sand.

Seep into, take over whatever animal


meets my gaze, allows me

to disappear before your cell phone

can pixelate my face.


You don’t stare down a bear—

not if you value your life!

Look at me: I become you.


You’ll do my bidding;

if you’re lucky, die

before I jump hosts again.


Your people call me skin walker;

feel the hitchhike tingle

of my presence as I take control.


Multiple personality or possession?

It don’t matter when I’ve got

you on my platter.


Your skin may crawl

or quiver. You tell yourself

it’s just a virus. You’re getting


a bad head cold or fever,

but by then I’m looking

through your eyes,


apprising the next rock

across the stream of molecules,

the river that runs through us all.


I’m your totem animal,

any animal you want to be,

but you can’t cross the same stream twice.


S-s-skin walker.  S-s-skin walker…

Light as a skeeter’s peter.

Gonna be the death of you.

Richard Stevenson,, wrote BP #76’s poems, “Honey Island Swamp Monster,” “Skin Walker,” and “Ucu.” From a series called Cryptid Shindig, the poems from this collection concern cryptid encounters, ET lore, or unexplained phenomena; others have appeared in three published volumes in the series: Why Were All the Werewolves Men? (Thistledown Press, 1994), Nothing Definite Yeti (Ekstasis Editions, 1999), Take Me to Your Leader! (Bayeux Arts Inc., 2003), and in a New & Selected volume called Bigfoot Boogie. Just retired from a thirty-year gig teaching English and Creative Writing at Lethbridge College, the poet has published thirty books in that time, counting a forthcoming volume. His most-recently published books are haikai poetry collections: Fruit Wedge Moon (Hidden Brook Press, 2015) and The Heiligen Effect (Ekstasis Editions, 2015).

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