Blackbirdan online journal of literature and the artsSpring 2022  Vol. 21  No. 1
an online journal of literature and the arts
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Sick Fox

News is not good for foxes on our hillside.
Mange is taking all the newborn kits.
And out for a walk around the neighborhood,
late afternoon, late spring, sky muddy gray—
I saw a grown fox lurch from a laurel thicket
and waver in the middle of the road
that slopes down half a mile to the highway.
I watched her—was she a she?—stagger, stop,
chew at a bald spot on her patchy fur,
fold her legs up oddly, one by one,
and sink down near the white dividing line.
It must have been the illness I was looking at.

She lifted up her head when I came closer
and put it down again. The news is not good.
It must have been that, that I was looking at.
And grief. I was looking at grief.  

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