regal crowns of bone
grow quick
from our heads.
we are deep
in the velvet now.
soon we’ll see
strung from trees–
staining our hands.
we itch
and claw
and peel back
the skin–
as though to
shed our youth.
tails raised in terror,
bounding back
to the comfort
of being unknown.
it looks painful.
and it is.
but it hurts
in different ways.