Jack Rabbit

—Michael Cadnum

With his claw-hammer ears,

and his too-big hind legs

he’s too fleet to be

graceful, in flight

all air, away and away, erratic

 

and determined.

We want so much.

All summer we schemed,

where to store hopes,

how to spend them.

The fire crews along the two-lane

burned the brush,

creosote and sage,

searing it all to black hush,

 

and still the long season

would never end.

It ends now.

Even to see

where I escape

he says, you will

 

be forced and forced

again to ignorance.

Fire char, struck

 

by  his leap, smoking

carbon. Now and now,

slashed mesquite,

 

flung rye-weed, liberator

from ennui, thief

of expectation. Gone.

And still there.

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