The Innisfree Poetry Journal

by Linda M. Fischer

An Ordinary Afternoon

A baby rabbit dragged home by my cat, the back of its head
clamped between her jaws—the phone ringing and my wits
unspooling—shattering the peace of an ordinary afternoon:
another round of mayhem to be committed upon the porch
where my animal spends most of her sleeping hours. Nary
a soul around to hear me yelp: the last disemboweled corpse,
the remains of a tail, hind legs—genus unrecognizable—
discreetly removed by my forbearing son, who at the moment
is nowhere to be found; my unanswered cries dissipate
in the lambent summer air. Startled, the cat releases her grip,
leaving her booty supine, lifeless, and begins to importune me
loudly for something other than a display of controlled hysteria:
communion? praise? kibbles? By now I'm babbling . . . .
Miraculously, the benumbed bunny rolls onto its stomach,
then remains still as death—cat within a whisker of it—
rabbits just dumb enough to feel they become invisible
if they don't move. I snatch the cat up unceremoniously
and heave her inside. Taking its cue, bunny careens around
the porch, frantic for an avenue of escape, flinging itself up
against the screening until it tears out the door I prop open. 
With apologies to the cat for contravening the pitiless laws
of nature, I choose to draw a curtain over the entire episode.

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