portion of the artwork for Ivy Grimes' poem

Man and Fox
Ivy Grimes

A man chasing a fox pulls his hound aside
and whispers, “Where will his spirit go
when his letters are absent?”
The man and fox had corresponded
in the past. Before the wife and kids.
They were intimate, proficient
in friendship, in teasing, the back and forth,
changing the subject when the subject
kept turning back to their relationship.

“Why don’t you chase me?” the fox would write, and the man
would write: “Be patient.”
“Why don’t you introduce me to your dog?” the fox would write,
and the man would write: “He’s recovering from surgery.”
“I like the letters,” the man would say, “better than I would
the feel of your soft pelt, or a story I can tell about the chase.”
“Letters are stories that don’t add up,” said the fox,
“what we need is action, an event.”

The fox will be caught, and his neck
will snap, and the man will try to snap it back
while the spirit, in the blood,
rolls down the teeth of the hound.

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FRiGG: A Magazine of Fiction and Poetry | Issue 52 | Fall/Winter 2018