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The Chase

Lisa Mann

It was not hunger that compelled the cat to hunt. Still, she stalked each possible prey with purpose and skill, strolling past many, before discovering a worthy hunt, focused her eyes, twitched her ears.

Before the chase began, she showed indifference. A casual stretch, a nap under the bush, tail loosely wrapped around her. Then, yawning, she emerges, eyes still focused on her prey. She studies its behavior, still yards away, as she imagines her conquest trapped within her teeth.

And then, the chase. She means to trap it in a place with no way out, in an unfamiliar world it cannot navigate. But it runs, zigzagging through the low brush, finally hiding in a small burrow she cannot reach. She waits.

She pounces at the first sign of movement, but the prey escapes beneath her weight. She stops to watch the direction it moves, fur twitching just above her neck, then sets off running at a cougar’s pace.

Finally, exhausted, the prey falls at her feet. She sits before it, paws it gently, admiring the faint heartbeat still fluttering under its chest. Then, losing interest, she walks away. Satisfied with her refusal of its offering. Satisfied with her prowess. At peace with the choice of her heart.

AUTHOR BIO:: Raised by wolves in the Mojave desert, Lisa was released to civilization at an early age, where she discovered books of poetry by Anne Sexton, novels by Tom Robbins and characters like Bonanza Jellybean. Her poetry has been previously published in Jeopardy, a Western Washington University publication, Howl, and the Desert Writers Issue of The Sun Runner.

August 30, 2020 8:49 pm

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