One cold day, this bunny went a-huntin. She packed her nap-sack with a sandwich and a shooter. It wasn’t a pea (shooter), nor was it a pea (sandwich). And it wasn’t a bang-bang. It was an up-to-the-minute Canon with big bad sights. A zoom.

Me, I hopped a well-trodden path. Hoppity-hop. Innocent as pie. In a dedicated, spellbound kind of a way. Hop hop. If you’d seen this bunny, you might have spied the ecstatic glint in her eye. I skipped my way to that old place of glories, where vast naked beech limbs reach to clasp fingers of twigs. Under my plates (of meat = feet), beech-nut shells crunched; furry stars breaking in a topsy sky of leaves. The beech shells were smashing and the world was upside down. And I didn’t heed the warning. Who would?

The dear little bunny, she popped herself neatly behind the wide friendly girth of a tree. She sat for an hour or so. And she ate her smoked salmon cream cheese on rye. Not very rabbity, you say. She was expecting a wait, and she was, as you know, prepared. She was infinitely patient, something she prided herself on—and she was parked, to boot, on a dark brown cagoule, her grey marl bottom dry as dry could be. At the appointed time, the smart little bunny, she took up her camera, and scanned around the wood. She proudly knew he was coming. There were certain things about him which were clockwork. Besides, she was somewhat psychic. And she’d been at this lark for more than a week—since the last time she bounced through these pages, telling the tale of when she first click!-ed! his mug—remember?

They say pride comes before a fall—whoever they are—and maybe they’re right. Only the bunny, she didn’t realise. Who would?

Me, silly bunny, I was hooked on the thrill of the chase, hoisted on the scaffold of this new illicit obsession. I knew myself to be stalking, and it didn’t dent my conscience. I felt brilliant, like the clean winter light craning through the branches and dappling the ground. My tender, secret parts dilated with exquisite anticipation. The big bad wolf had become my thing (again). And me, I was getting to think that he wasn’t so bad. Just beautifully, wondrously big. Ah me.

The bunny, she waited, all vibed and fervent, and sure enough his footsteps came, pricking at her pixies (= ears). She raised her Canon to her too-clever sights and zoomed into the gap in the trees where she knew he would emerge, her fertile mind ogling him in advance of his arrival. She spied him at last. But this time, the wolf, his demeanour was different. He was smiling a soft-sugar soup. The wily ol’ bugger, he was not alone. He was holding hands. With a lithe little blondie; the gold of the bleach of her stupid long tresses glinting in the shimmer of a sunbeam. And blow me, if this wisecrack hadn’t gone and found himself some kind of a storybook pal. She was a Little Red Riding Hood in a red red coat, no messin.

Me, I saw at last the message of the crunched up furry floor of the wood: things broken = things over = things gone. I remembered that I was stupid; after all, my mother had made sure I couldn’t forget. I should have known the glory wouldn’t last. It was too good to be true. I stung a little; daft bunny weepers (= peepers = eyes) weeping true to their name. Then I pulled it together, my heart as stone. Me, I didn’t care.

I lined up the two in my sights, and shot them, the pair, good and proper. It was quite a satisfaction. They drifted past me in their dream of foolish togetherness and I stole their secrets in freeze-frame snaps.

Clickety-click-click-click.

Then up the bunny bopped, blithe as can be. Bop bop. This little piggy-pimple, she darted quietly after them, a tiny tell-tale tell-tail crunching underfoot. But they were too wrapped up to notice. She crushed the beech shells gladly, smashing their message of broken times. She didn’t care. Me, I wove in and out, duckin and a-divin, through the trees. Twisted, you may think she is: for she followed them. Twisted and turned through the woods.

On their tails.