The limping fox was seen in the bush near the former sports field, nosing its way through beer cans and boredom’s refuse. Then by the dam, then out near the bay. We carried the live trap up the hill to be filled with kibble and the chance of catching it or a skunk or the morning dew. I imagined a fox with a crutch. I imagined signing its cast, putting a happy face and a get well message on the fresh white plaster. I imagined the book it could write during its down time. Something like Mary Oliver, something like Jane Jacobs or Spinoza. Something that explained itself to us. Something that explained the world to me. Something that said no matter how you’ve been shot at, mauled, or stricken by disease, you can still be perfect as a flame. A quick red flame. A tiny red flame on a wick in a room so dark even God cannot see.
Richard-Yves Sitoski is a songwriter, performance poet, and the 2019-2021 Poet Laureate of Owen Sound, Ontario, Canada. He is also the designated Artistic Director of the 2022 Words Aloud festival. He has released two books of verse, brownfields (Ginger Press, 2014) and Downmarket Oldies FM Station Blues (Ginger Press, 2018), and a CD of spoken word poetry, Word Salad (2017). His poems have appeared in many journals, including The Maynard, Barren Magazine, Tiny Molecules, and as part of Brick Books’ Brickyard spoken word video series. Twitter: @r_sitoski, WordPress: richardsitoski.wordpress.com