Together they are diamonds: honed, bruting,
decadent as a bird’s beak, a fish’s eye,
grapes clotting the platter, sweet wine
slicing the rim.

Alone they are silent: the chipped tooth,
the dry root, the faux thorn.

Hang a tooth around your neck
and pretend a solitary point
can protect you.


Ann Marie Thornburg received an MFA in poetry from the University of Michigan’s Helen Zell Writers’ Program, where she was also a Zell Postgraduate Fellow in poetry. Her poems appear in Boston Review, Michigan Quarterly Review, and harlequin creature. She was the recipient of a 2013 Human-Animal Studies Fellowship from the Animals & Society Institute and Wesleyan University, and a 2013 grant from the Culture & Animals Foundation.