A Cougar Too Close

For Cass

The weights balance,
yours against his, but the cat
has motion on his side,
and hunger. You smell the raw
intention, and go rigid
on your knees.
You're standing in a spot
going narrower.

There's geometry to this.
Laid toe to tree, 
you'd stretch the length
from lunge to prey.
There are also tricks
of prayer, while the last
dimension, time, spreads
in never-ending circles

where nothing but sun-slant,
shadow, leaf-fall in the breeze
shift. Is it your will
or his, that he tires finally
of these patterns, declines
your warm center?
When he pads away into forest
you're already gone
frantic with escape.

Taylor Graham