Thinking about it now, things were bound to turn out this way.
Makes a person wonder what battery hens dream about; maybe they see them too.
Always anticlockwise, glimpsed by the corner of my left eye; how swiftly it slips behind me and out of sight.
Only ever one of them at a time, though I feel certain there are many.
I first saw one of them around the same time all the walls of my room turned into mirrors, in that way things do when observed for too long.
Alone in my kitchen, washing dishes before a black window, night’s garden just beyond.
I turned to place a pan in its cupboard when the blackness of my window slipped away and behind me.
When I looked directly it was right there as it always had been, only the moonlit glint of a quivering leaf left to betray the creature once stood there.
Or perhaps not, so I thought until it happened again, this time in my living room two nights later.
They are circling, I know it now, I can feel it.
And again today, closer this time, enough to whisper in my ear as it slips away from my eyeline yet again…
“How long can you live this way?”