Exhibit '0' (Natural History Museum)

Exhibit '0' (Natural History Museum)

It frolicked in the wooded glade, a vital little fawn,
The fox cub somersaulted like the spirit of the dawn;
It snapped and spun, a bouncing ball of reddish furry fur;
And shimmered as it seemed to dance upon the very air.

Alert to every earthly threat, with ears pricked up and still,
It quivered as it smelled the air and shivered in the chill.
With groundless fear of danger near and peril close to hand;
Retreating to the undergrowth to make a final stand.

And as the day descended and the mist was on the hill,
The sun was on the treetops for the cub was lying still;
To eavesdrop on the forest folk who whisper in the night;
Who watch and wait the longest wait through disappearing light.

The cubbish ways were yonder days when on the forest air,
The vixen wise was trapped and caught beyond the hummock lair.
A shot rang out - a victor's shout; now in the sylvan glade,
The rustle knells the forest bells where russet foxes played.

I visited the tomb today and felt so sad, alas;
That it should end its merry ways beneath a sheet of glass.
And on its grave inscription reads an elegy of woe;
A female Fox's Skeleton - Don't Touch. Exhibit 'O'.

By Michael Walsh (pen name)