Recapturing Eden

Unicorn among them.
Graceful innocence pursued.
Kicking like a panicky mule.
Shouts, curses, snarling hounds,
all on a Cloister's tapestry.
All on a fading fabric,
but the threads still knit together.
Unicorn among us,
hanging on a museum wall.
Where's the virgin to serve as fish bait?
Was the beast's horn meant to hook her?
She who used chaste beauty as a lure.
What is seen clearly
is the horn goring a snapping dog,
slitting open bloody skin.
Unicorn---symbol of purity, perfect icon,
where are those human souls leading it,
these stalkers in an ancient weave?
They hold it at bay,
a ring of spears garlands its gracile neck.
It's corralled, surrounded by flowers.
And within the enclosure a singular tree---
is this the tree of life or knowledge?
Are there fruits to this labor?
Is this Eden with purity returned?
Did the Lords and Ladies set their servants
to recapture Eden's mascot?
Its hooves pound the fence.
Innocence held hostage, a chattel in a pen,
with flecks of dried canine blood stuck to its spiral horn.

Richard Fein

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