When A Cat Goes Out

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When A Cat Goes Out

He’d patrol the doorway waiting

To make his break

Or he’d scratch around the threshold 

As if he could dig himself out

All he knew was out was where

He wanted to be

When the opportunity

Was right he’d bolt

When he went out that last time

Looking for whatever he craved

Then attempted to return

There was no there

There anymore

No familiar arms to welcome him back

Nor nimble fingers to massage his weary head

No food in his dish

No breast to fondle

No open door

No one knows where a wonderer

Goes when a prowler goes out

He sees what others can’t

Because of askance perspectives

He makes patterns of disappearing

After having been on the scene too long

And they speculate about where he’s gone

“He’s got a woman cross town” Ray said

“Who won’t come out with him or

Hang with the likes of us”

“He has an alternative personality that’s

Shy and reclusive” Dana chimed in

“So he hides to sulk and write 

He’s often manic and won’t

Come out in his depressed state”

But that last time he went out

Out swallowed him whole

So he stayed there in the belly of the beast

Too long to remember his way home

And when he arrived in a place he thought was home

Everything recognizable was gone

Out has black holes that eat light

Especially the kind in cat’s eyes

That wide eyed bright enthusiasm that

Expects stuff is depowered

Blacked out

Like New York in a major storm

Scent of a woman and

Radar of voices bouncing off each other

Work like bat intelligence when   

Sense of sight is rendered invalid   

So he closed his eyes and blew his saxophone

Listening for echoes feeling around for

Osmosis believing in aural perceptions

What he heard confirmed he was still alive

Though he had lost his way

He was out in front of something  

He didn’t know about

Home was not an avenue or a building

Where he used to live

But somebody who knew him

And put up with his shenanigans

In was not the songs he already knew

But the ones he’d never heard

That insisted on entering through soles

Of his feet

Before exiting the bell of his horn

When a cat goes out

There are no guarantees

The locks will accept his old keys

So he crawls into a window

When the front door’s on fire

He rewrites his story to accommodate 

Strangers

To introduce himself again

In a world he thought he knew

In woodwork that’s lost his scent

Arleta LittleCatJ. Otis Powell‽ (with interrobang)When A Cat Goes Out

◄ He Likes His Point Of View

Anniversary ►

Comments

<Deleted User> (10933)

Sun 24th Feb 2013 00:06

i cannot adequately express more than a.e.'s comments so instead of submitting a cookie-cutter-ism i will simply agree; i too am a cat lover-cat watcher-even a crazy-cat-woman as those who are compassionate are often tagged-accused-demeaned and i have found many "locks that won't accept my keys"--you write the words in my heart that go unspoken, but which i store in the vaults of my soul--so when i see my thoughts from another's pen, i am overcome with wonder of the man who was always cloaked in mystery, never seeing him clearly when i could see, and now as i strain through my now blinded eyes he is in clear focus.

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Anthony Emmerson

Thu 29th Nov 2012 13:43

Being a cat lover I very much enjoyed this meditation J.O. Particularly enjoyed these lines in the context of your poem:

"Out has black holes that eat light

Especially the kind in cat’s eyes"

and:

"When a cat goes out

There are no guarantees

The locks will accept his old keys

So he crawls into a window

When the front door’s on fire

He rewrites his story to accommodate

Strangers

To introduce himself again

In a world he thought he knew

In woodwork that’s lost his scent"

Poignant and thought-provoking.


Regards,
A.E.



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