Size / / /

Stella checks the food supplies.

There won't be enough for the dogs,

but the cats might make another month.

And birds well, there's only a lame parrot

some kid found at beside the road. Plenty of seed.

The vets didn't show up this morning. They haven't been around for days.

The waiting room has been empty for she doesn't remember how long and

she's afraid to leave, afraid of what she'll find outside the doors.

Back against the wall, she slides down. Sits on the floor.

Stares at the cages. The dogs whine, pacing back and forth.

The felines are curled far back in their cells, noses tucked under tails.

When darkness falls, she crawls into an empty cage.




Marge Ballif Simon free lances as a writer-poet-illustrator for genre and mainstream publications such as Nebula Awards 32, Strange Horizons, Flashquake, Space & Time, Dreams & Nightmares, Aoife’s Kiss, Dark Regions, Fantasy Magazine, The Pedestal Magazine, EOTU, Tales of the Unanticipated. She has illustrated three Stoker award collections. Her illustrated poetry collection, “Artist of Antithesis” was a Stoker finalist in 2004.
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