I’m paid by the hour

to transcribe principals’ thoughts

on school improvement

while I watch a herd of lionesses

try to take down a water buffalo.


The starving cubs watch the adults

as they embed their claws in the black hide

and blood darkens their fur from lip to throat.


When a threat is made

against her school

the principal says

it will be her face in the paper

if a kid gets hurt on her watch.