Lupine Ultimatum: a #tankaprose

Frank J. Tassone

Photo by Ray Hennessy on Unsplash

She is a howling in the wilderness we can never see

-from The Memory Palace, by Mira Bartók

A mere howl away.

That’s as far as the family has roamed. That’s all I need do, and their answer will guide me to them.

Why don’t I?

I am the Alpha, father to my cubs, mate of my mate. We hunt our range with pride. Should our prey catch even a glimpse of my black fur, they would flee. But a far more dangerous predator hunts me!

Twilight comes. I can’t shake him. I dare not lead him to my family, or them to him.

But my mate betrays me without knowing it. Her howl peels across the distance between us. My predator stops, tilts his head. He will not abandon his pursuit now.

A mere howl away. I do not answer…

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