I scan the forest floor – lush, green –
for coyotes and bobcats. The shadow
of a hawk’s widespread wings graces
my view. I am trying to get used to discomfort.
Someone I love dearly wants me to.
It is also the right thing. It is the only path
to fearlessness. I am an escape artist,
a habit I picked up young. Many situations
are wet paper bags to me, easy to tear out of.
People stare like I am Houdini. They do not
realize escape comes easy to the likes of us.
I am good at disappearing. Problem is,
I am always still here, always somewhere
watching hawk shadows, slow to face
the real hawk.
Amanda J. Bradley has fiction published or forthcoming in Apricity Magazine, Paterson Literary Review, and the anthology Table for None. She has three poetry collections with NYQ Books: Queen Kong, Oz at Night, and Hints and Allegations. She has published poems widely in such literary magazines as Chiron Review, Lips, Rattle, The New York Quarterly, and Gargoyle. She earned an MFA at The New School and lives in Beacon, New York.