The Road Well Traveled

In the darkness, one cannot see the fire of the fox.
A shadow runs before the light of the opening door.
There are no straight lines in nature and tonight
is no exception. The ground warps the bright square
and the figure framed for a moment in its perimeter.

Tip of tail flames briefly in the flash and the fox
flees before discovery like some diminished sun,
across the snow over the wooded crest down to where
the great oak lies in perpetual decay beside the spring.

On the morrow, the figure revealed as human in the light
of the sun will discover scat in the middle of the trail
and be reminded that this path, contrary to the scratchings
of Frost and Peck, is like all of the others, not less
traveled, but rather well worn by the fox and the unseen
scurrying feet of nature’s countless millions.

1997

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