National Poetry Month: MALAMUTE by Jehanne Dubrow

Apr 3, 2014 | Archive, Feature


by Jehanne Dubrow


Honduras, 1947


Someone brought winter to the tropics. At first,

it slept near the roots of a strangler tree, curled

under chairs, licked salt from sweating ankles. It was

content. Table scraps fed its belly. Breezes carried the

blue memory of ice. Its teeth were beautiful in the

way of sharpened things. Winter tried not to pant.

But the little girl kept touching it, kept stroking

the curved blad of its tail. Her hands were wet

with breakfast. Winter leaped from the dirt, fast

as a change in weather. Later, someone would tell

the story—how it bit her throat, how bristling and

alone it must have been, this Alaska abandoned to the

wrong latitude.

This poem is from issue 39.1. You may purchase a copy here.