Bunnies in the Field


K. Barratt


I look at her, with her cane and carrier bag,

And do what the doctor said:

Think about bunnies in the field.

She’s an old lady and nothing more, waiting

For the train like the rest of us. I breathe,

One, two, three, four. An old lady

And nothing more -except that

She is more (bunnies in the field);

She’s the Crone, mother of all evil,

Destroyer of worlds,  of each world

In every one of us (breathe, one,

Two, three, four). She can’t fool me.

Behind those dentures there are fangs

Ready to eat and she and her shadow men

(Bunnies in the field) will tear us apart.

They have been following me for

Some time, the shadow men.

Long necks, long fingers (one, two, three, four),

Slithering from the corners, sucking all joy

From the world, my world, my heart,

My shrinking heart that only sees in

White and black now. And no amount

Of meds make the shadow men go away.

I bet it was them who told the Crone about her.

For she cradles the cribs of babies

Who never get to wake up, this cursed

Murderous Crone dressed as Lady Claus.

It was her who cradled the crib of mine.

(Go beyond four, count to five)

Her and her shadow men.

He doesn’t believe me, of course.

No one does. But I know it

Since forever.

I come closer to her.

She smells of death.

(Bunnies in the field)

Old fool, thinking she can hide in

The wrinkle disguised of a grand-mama.

I can see the void in her eyes,

It’s the same void of my arms since she

Was taken away.

The train is arriving, the shadow men

stirring, deciding. They know what

I’m about to do. Will they

Stick with her or let me go through?

(Bunnies in the field)

I can set you all free, shadow men.

I have no need for you to do my bidding.

The train is rising a breeze, announcing

Its arrival. The time is now.

I lift my hand a little

(Count, count to four!)

And the shadow men retire

To the corners, under the seats,

Behind the sandwich bar.

And I see my babe on the other

Side of the de tracks (bunnies in

The field, bunnies in the field!)

And all the babies that she took,

With her granny dress and carrier

Bag and knitted hat and weathered cane.

And I press, I push, I back away.

(Bunnies in the field).

Amid the shouting and chaos,

I breath. Deeply. And then I count,

One, two, three, four.

I hold my bunnies  and my baby

And decide to take the bus back home.


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