In the Outback
They called it “the outback.” Brush and bushes among trees, which obscured the chain link fence separating our property from parking lot. Once an argument led to thrown sticks on both sides. Mostly they were fine. They’d play safari, and if the neighborhood cat wandered through it was a tiger. Then they’d pet it and run inside for juice boxes.
“Daddy, there’s something weird.”
The dove’s chest cavity was empty, the inedible wings splayed. “Looks like the cat got one,” I said.
They still petted the cat but looked at it differently, more like I looked at them.