Ode to a White Cat


Strong, supple muscles wrapped in soft white fur,
leaping, landing, stretching, settling in,
demanding petting, responding with purr.
Contesting with sleep, this cat scores a win:
Of course, he says, you need me here, shushing
birds and books and dreams. Creating bliss is
easy. Stroke my fur in thanks and go on.
Pink tongue barely touching, whiskers brushing
my shoulder, arm, hand, with kitty kisses,
through all the small hours before the dawn.

Blue eyes hold my gaze, closing lazily,
opening slowly, looking at me above.
The internet assures me, crazily,
that cats speak and a slow blink signals love.
Is it love that brings him bumping nightly
on my bedroom door, demanding I come
out and rest in the other bed, where I
may serve as a cat pillow, now rightly
human servant to cat I have become,
paying tribute to fur and love thereby.

In the face of daily news, he offers
a cat’s unfailing calm. Watch me, not them,
he says, not that, not all the world proffers.
Touch my soft fur, feel my sharp teeth, I am
your most important task, your daily me.
Make me your world today, not flickering
images on a screen or words of doom.
Ignore all that. Pet me, and let it be.
As I hear politicians’ bickering.
one paw, sharp claws reach out, bring me back home.

July 8 2018—Writing practice: working on creating something within tight rules and formulae. Not sure if I succeeded, but the effort took me to another place, and that felt good.


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