Goldie by Pat Byrne
There’s a small glen not far from our house. On a good day I go up there to read my paper. It’s quiet in the mornings apart from the odd person out walking their dog. Sometimes I sit for a while and watch the rabbits or maybe a fox – there tends to be more of them nowadays.
I’d never seen one on a lead before. At first I thought it was a dog slinking by the man’s side. Its burnished coat gave it away. The man’s hair was the same russet colour. Perhaps dyed to match his pet. Likely he’d taught it to give a paw to entertain his friends. Poor thing.
I went back to my paper as he drew near. Nice day, he said.
I nodded and looked at the fox, a brilliant creature, bright topaz eyes, winged ears. He stopped and the vixen sat, winding her exceptional tail around her body. He bent and stroked the ruff of her neck. It looked soft, shampooed.
Depressing, he said, pointing to the headline on my paper. The country’s in a mess.
Aye, bloody Tories. Better aff independent.
I agree, he said. Make our own decisions.
The fox stood. Maybe see you again, he said.
Martha had the table set when I got in. She put down a plate with bacon and tottie scones. I’m not hungry. I’m too damn angry to eat. I told her about the fox on the lead and the arrogant man.
Captured. It doesn’t even know it’s a fox.
She laughed. You’re no half jumping tae conclusions. That’s Sandy. He’s started taking Myra Patterson’s fox for a walk. Give it some exercise. It’s awfie sad.
Whit’s awfie sad?
Wee while ago now. Myra caught a fox in her kitchen eating oot the dog’s dish so she started leaving food at the back door. Came every day so it did. Turned up wi four wee cubs. So they all came, ate what was put down for them then the mother would sit in the grass and watch them playing. She was a good mum. Myra was dead upset when they stopped coming. She watched and watched but no sign of them. Then one wee cub turned up by itsell Myra took it in. Cries it Goldie. It disnae know it’s a fox.
Pat Byrne, December, 2018
This section: Seasonal Stories and Poems by Glasgow Writers, stories and poems
- Poetry by Hafsah Bashir
- Shaking Hands With Christmas – Brian Whittingham
- Winter Rain – Derek J. Brown
- Tak Tent (Take Care) Christmas video – Janet Crawford
- Ice on Loch Lomond a poem by Catriona Malan
- Hopes and Fears by James Connarty
- Reunion – a poem by Rizwan Akhtar
- Wash a poem by Nina Quigley
- Poetry: Love’s Noise by Rizwan Akhtar
- Ghazal: the phone – poem by Rizwan Akhtar
- Corona Virus Stew – poem by Leela Soma
- Baked With Love – a poem by Leela Soma
- To Move On – short story by Samina Chaudry
- Some Wintertime Poems by Finola Scott
- Three New Poems by Rizwan Akhtar
- Town Hall Meeting U.S.A. Leela Soma
- Two poems by Finola Scott: ‘Garlic’ and ‘Rhubarb’
- Onion by Leela Soma – vegetable inspired poetry
- Flowers – poems by Leela Soma
- I Deserve This – a poem for Christmas by Calum Maclean