The Tiger pt. 3 (the end)

We waited all night
framing the final moments
we shared with our
fallen companion.

In our minds
touching his body
would be a bad idea.
Best if we left it alone
hoping that our scent
would not drive the tiger away.

We remained inside the house
convinced that the pall of death
would cover us like a fog
preying for our goal
to be attained quickly

We found strange distractions
to take up our time.
Snacking on what we could find
dried meat and old fruit.
Counter the boards in the old floor
estimated the length of loose cloth
in an unraveling carpet.

All things
that might have seemed normal
without the body of our friend present.

It seemed as though this place
had been created by the tiger.
A place that it could come
and trap its prey.
In that regard
there was a kinship it shared
to a giant spider.
I was too focused
(or clearly not)
on our lost friend
to realize what was happening.

My living companion
must have caught on
he named the tiger Shelob
which at the time
had no meaning to me.

We were attempting
the impossible.
Staying awake
without much in the way
of conversation
through a long night
of waiting.
Adrenaline
could only carry us so far.

As you might expect
we fell asleep.

In the morning
the sun shone through a thick mist-like fog
birds sung and
our friend was gone.
Shelob had come in the night
without us waking.
She carefully dragged off
her prize
left us behind.
We were happily convinced
that hiding near the body
saved our lives
Our happiness was tempered by
the great regret
that our friend
was a corpse in the first place.

He was
a sacrifice
we had no intention
of making.

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