It’s pleasant enough
wandering these pathways
flanked by tall the rectangular cages,
each protected by a steel door
with a security code.
Even pleasanter later,
when the cages are lower
and less daunting enclosures
of decorative brick or pricey stone
surrounding quiet green spaces,
each protected by metal gates
with a security code.
Occasionally a creature emerges,
sometimes with barred teeth,
clenched fists, raised claws.
But mostly looking sad
and out of condition.
Lost inside itself.
Poor things.
Lost souls
Mostly though, they are seen outside,
moving purposefully to a destination,
not free to wander random paths.
Or heading back to their cages,
hoping there is no diversion
which may leave them lost.
Leave them in terror of
the unforeseen
The unforeseen
that may arise
from freedom.
to be lost.
Poor things.
Lost souls
in or out
of their
First published in Scarlet Leaf Review, January 2017


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