Early morning encounter


Between my running ghost

and the grey sky,

A squirrel freeze-frames


Just ahead of me –

on a spindly branch.

She stares in me.

Mirrored by her huge tail:

a quivering question-mark.


And then, in a sudden hopscotch,

She staccatos along again

To the safety of hometree.


I run beneath her empty stage.

Twigs there – still violining.

The echo of my trainers on the path –

The sound of hands clapping.


Harvey Duke


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