What I Saw

I saw it on my way to work today. Its fragile body lying stretched amongst the leaves, arms and legs reaching out to the railings, as if it wanted to squeeze through to the allotment on the other side. Its cheek was damaged – the fur bunched up where it should have lain flat. But the rest of it looked unbroken – short grey and black fur tiger-striped and strokable. I looked for a collar, an identifier, but there was none. Wondered what to do. Should I tell someone? Be late for work? Who to tell. It was probably someone’s pet. It was someone.

I left it there. Walked to the station. Sad. Moved. Impotent.

Sad for this soft creature and for whoever it left behind.

I wish now that I had stroked it.

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