Keeping Track

Leila Chatti


When I run into friends from our past life,
they ask, they want to know 

if I’ve kept track of you.
I parse the question as you would, examine its parts.

Three years since
and I feel still hunted,

your sight ever a scope,
an animal’s golden eye. 

I need always to know
your exact distance—three hundred miles, 

ninety-nine hours of footfalls,
one spontaneous flight—I track it the way

a gazelle on the plains
tracks the lion which hunts it,

that mutual watching,
an instinctive awareness

of space and of when
to start running.