Chasing Rabbits

by Ann Howells
Our old dog trots to yard’s end
barks at a helmeted cyclist and passes
unaware within six feet of a rabbit
who wears immobility
like an invisibility cloak.
The rabbit knows the dog is blind—
right eye a milky blue
left one dim beneath a sheen
like oil on water. The rabbit nibbles
crocus and seeds sprouting beneath the feeder.
He lolls in tall grass, stretches his belly
against cool green earth, only eyes
and ear tips visible.
Occasionally the dog catches a scent
eagerly sniffs erratic patterns
across the lawn; rabbit is long gone
watches from the perimeter.
One tentative step
and he bullets under the fence
or deep into tangled yucca that hides
his nest. Eventually the dog tires,
returns to the house.

But at night, when the old dog
sprawls on his rug beside the bed
breathing wheezy and regular
he chases rabbits in his dreams
paws twitching rapidly
nails click, click, clicking the baseboard.
Ann Howells is a member of Dallas Poets Community and editor of its journal, Illya's Honey. Her chapbook, Black Crow in Flight, was published by Main Street Rag in 2007. Ann enjoys traveling around Texas and photographing its county courthouses. At last count she had captured 186 (of 254). Currently, she is just staying inside, hoping the heat wave will break.

© 2010, Ann Howells