The Rabbit

 Sara Backer

After the Seder,
on the empty highway, suddenly
a rabbit.  His body thuds under my car.
That fast.
I saw him clearly in my headlights—
an adolescent brown cottontail
with elegant profiled ears.
One exquisite pause
ended his life.

I falter under bright lights, too.
Because I think should I go, should I stay
I’m hit by my hesitation.

I’m not a neophyte at sacrifice.
I know if I leave my husband
I’ll have to leave alone—no  room
for apple trees in my car,
and no friends will come with me,
not even our beloved cats.
And I know that freedom is a harsh desert,
harder than an Egyptian brickyard.

Haven’t I learned
plague after plague,
slaughter after slaughter,
there’s never time
for bread to rise?




Also by Sara Backer
I Like Coffee / Redwood Vision
Weeder Geese / Four Senryu for the Beaver