There is a glitter on the fence
Caught in my headlights' beam,
On hilltops in the stormy dark.
The town is lost, unseen,

But not this single star. An owl?
It is too sharp for deer.
It is the hunter, not the prey.
My breath grows quick, like fear,

But now I drive more slowly
Safe in my ton of steel
To catch it in the frozen glare
The hungry eye's next meal.

It does not lift on brindled wings
Or slither like a rat.
It turns a white disdainful face.
It is the hunting cat,

The latest in a careless line
Who haunt the sheds and barns,
Curl on old coats, in dusty sun -
Dogs are more dear on farms.

The rough dogs are shut up for night.
The farmer snores near by.
The cat springs lightly from his mud.
She settles in the sky.

Alison Brackenbury

If you've any comments on this poem, Alison Brackenbury would be pleased to hear from you.