In sleep

White filaments of whiskers stretching out,

slim antennae quivering with each breath,

dark glossy pod of pads ringing round

the end of each black/ginger/tawny paw,

long plume of tail dangling down the side

of my paper-strewn table, shivering slightly

as my fingers brush its fall, the tip of black

filling my palm when I catch it, stroke it,

sunlight on the lines of caramel extending

to an apex above the kohl-lined darkness

of your eyes with their galaxy of green—

their hidden well of unknown Felis catus—

that I may seek to penetrate as I pet

the slight swell of your fawn-colored belly,

follow the deep brown path from the crown

of your head down the full bow of back

to the small place where your body’s plushness

meets the gossamer softness of your tail, hear

the small scrunch of curved claws on paper

as you p’snorr* in delight, then stretch out, feet

pushing against me, face scrunched, a kitten again,

full of the froth of milk, lavished with rough washes

from your mother’s deep pink tongue; now here

you are, so many years later, full-grown, all

fourteen pounds of you, a shape adrowse

in the heat of the sun, a deep smile

of knowing under the glistening

rich peach of your small nose:

a cat asleep

a cat content

the perfection

of the universe

right here.

 

*purr + snore

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