Walking across campus late at night

street lights flicker
and buzz like wings
on a mosquito
and I remember that scene
from every horror film
where the lights go out
and girl disappears…

posture rigid
feet moving fast
each sound makes me jump
eyes peeled, waiting
for the constant, invisible danger
not all men…
but any man

what was that? a leaf
crunching under feet
coming from behind – red alert
don’t slow down
clutch keys in one hand
phone in the other: a pointer finger
hovering over speed-dial

a man walks around me
on the footpath
leaf stuck to the bottom
of his shoe – turns, smiles
as he goes by

the voice in my head wonders
how long it would take
to run
the last 200 metres home

Raelee Lancaster