City Fox

Walking back from the corner shop
in semi dark
through discarded chicken bones
used condoms
between the concrete walls and leprous planes,
a lonely black bird shrieks
and I try to – sigh away the day

Rustles have me peering
through deep shadow expecting rat
sour chemical residues rise
from scuffled soil but instead,
the gently padded predator
of discarded snacks -
a fox
crosses my path

We regard each other,
she sniffs
my breath is held
held in – like my limping desire
while she prowls free
rufous furred, a wild thing
looking at me as I imagine
a visitor to a zoo might pityingly
a caged ape

She leaves me
with my unnatural restraint
and struts away

Andrea Mbarushimana