BY JOHN GREY
Copyright is held by the author.
He’s the kind of guy who misses the fox chase
though he’s lived in New England all his life,
has never been atop a horse, and wouldn’t
know a hound from a sheep dog.
But there’s something about that elusive canine
as it scurries through the woods to the safety of its lair,
pursued by a pack of dogs and a further pack
of humans in red coats and white breeches.
And he’s also the one who would give anything
to sit in the back of the bar and sorrowfully recount
the fate of his Jewish ancestors, murdered in the
Nazi death camps, though he’s as Irish as his thirst
and the red of his cheeks. And he’s nostalgic for
his days competing in rodeos throughout the west.
And the mountain climbing in the Alps.
And running with the bulls in Spain.
His life has been too ordinary.
There’s nothing to go by.
Even to himself, he’s nothing more than
a figure at a table, sipping beer,
scanning his fellow drinkers for anyone
with the least signs of being worse off than he is.
He has a past. But he struggles to find
the story in it. Maybe the next beer will
coax the fox out of hiding. Or change his name
to Cohen. Or buck him well and good.
Or take him one notch nearer the peak.
Or gore him with bull horns.
That last would be most ironic of all —
taken down by the bull
when he could have been shooting it all these years.