All the things of this world
Outside my window, a feral kitten is mewing.
The terrible dawn reminds me that we are given
to life and the living of it as it is.
Aunt Betty won’t make the night, most likely.
After eighty-nine years, her brain has blown
a head-gasket and the kindest woman I’ve
known is being hooked-up along the shoulder
to be taken to whatever passes for an afterlife.
The kitten continues not to matter in the darkness
pressing its protest of milklessness, kneading
motherlessness as it claws the soft empty dirt.
Every dawn breaks its price for the living of it.
Most likely neither will make the end of this day.
And no one will notice.
The world is too busy tending to joys and happy
endings, commencements full of promise and
hope that warmth will follow what it dares to
birth all the days of its thriving.
Aunt Betty hears that kitten but cannot wake
up to tell anyone she does. If she could she
would ask that milk be set out, that a padded
bed be made up, that a hand be present to
soothe and comfort all the things of this
world that need what they never get.
October 2, 2008