Photo of Sunny.

Thirteen Ways Of Looking At A Cat

Marc Nagy

© Copyright 2000 by Marc Nagy

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This is basically a poem about my first cat, a yellow
tabby named Sunny, who passed away a few years ago.
I know that the poem format isn't what others have used,
but in a way it is also a story about my relationship
with Sunny that other cat-people will understand.


Curled in a shoe box,
He is a stranger in a strange land.
His tiny misproportioned body
About to be appropriately anointed
By the towering despots that surround him.


The cat speaks
An indecipherable language
But is understood.


The simplest of objects
Becomes the prey
Of the inexperienced student.


The cat can be a bear in winter
Anytime, anyplace.


The transition
From statue to comet to statue
The cat knows well.


The cat belongs to his despots
And they belong to the cat.


Alone in his vast territory,
The cat still performs flawlessly.


He is drugged by blades of grass and friendly trees,
Taken in generous doses.
Addiction becomes inevitable.


The cat's travels may last 3 days or 3 hours
He prefers a pile of leaves to a velvet pillow
He accepts table scraps as gourmet.
The despots are baffled.


A soft caress
Will start the unique song
That deafens all troubles.


The master has given all that the cat desired,
And the cat returns the favor:
A constant equilibrium maintained.


The master calls a name and the cat responds.
They are side-by-side.
An invisible bond that is all too visible.


The lifeless cat
The body getting stiffer by the second.
From whence thou came
Thou hast returned
Curled in a shoe box.

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