Monday, March 27, 2006

A Poem, "The Why," for Goblin and Trillian

The following is a poem I wrote for both my cats, shortly after the Northridge earthquake in 1994. It appeared in the May 1994 issue of Mind in Motion:


My cats stare with human eyes,
begging me to stop.
They are tired of all this nonsense
and have proceeded beyond
the how and are wondering about the why.

Goblin is completely black with autumnal yellow eyes.
He arches his back like Halloween
then stops, mid-stretch,
as he senses the movement
and flees like a snake
slithering for its hole.

Trillian is calmer and will actually stay still
as I make the walls speak,
but her green eyes give her away
as they become even deeper and wider.
She flicks her head like a bullwhip
and humanly grasps for stability
on whatever she is perched.

“Why are you doing this?” they ask me silently,
“What did we do wrong?”
There is no response from me but sympathy
as I squirt adrenaline and wish the room
would stop shaking.
It is not my fault,
yet my cats continue to blame me, as God,
leaving me with no one to blame
but the Universe.
It’s a concept I couldn’t even begin to explain,
especially to my cats,
who just want it to stop
so they can stare at birds
and sleep in peace again,
as they did before
I became angry with them.
They still haven’t figured out why.

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