He built himself a sanctuary in the old garage
to shelter from his mom’s complaints, his stepfather’s barrage
of insults that he spewed out whenever he drank beer
and his teenage stepson happened to be near.
He frequented the shadows of their viral house.
Took shelter in the attic, quiet as any mouse.
Hid out in the garden in a cave of loam.
Anyplace his stepfather was not became his home.
His meals lacked spice and savor also missing in his mother.
Her meals furnished nutrition, but very little other.
No laughter flavored mealtimes. The food rendered no spice.
He secreted small bits of food—a slice of bread, some rice—
to feed to his companions—a family of mice.
It was worth the beatings that he’d suffered twice
when that man not his father saw him hide away
some morsel in his pocket and said he’d have to pay.
Raising his fist, he said he would take it from his hide
and gave another beating to the boy who never cried.
The boy who simply stored it up—kept all of it inside—
bore the abuse stoically and then crept outside
to commune with his real family who lived in wall and rafter
of the garage he’d made his home, and filled with love and laughter.
They came out at his bidding, swarmed around his feet
to eat a bit of porridge, some carrot or a beet.
Some crackers from his school lunch, some lettuce or a plum,
proved the presence of a heart that otherwise was numb.
Mice frequented his pockets and sat upon his shoulder—
every generation seeming to grow bolder.
They slipped into his mother’s house when she was sound asleep
and crept into those places where he could never creep.
They nestled in her shoes and chewed out all the toes,
severed all her bra straps, gnawed holes in all her hose.
They found the belt the monster man used to beat their friend,
dragged it deep under the bed and chewed it end-to-end.
When they crept into the larder to finish off the pie,
it must have been an accident that the can of lye
spilled into the sugar, pouring out in one fine stream
right into the bowl that would be placed beside the cream
on the breakfast table. For how could it be
that vermin knew only the man took sugar in his tea?
The prompt words today are sanctuary, garage and nutrition.
No Peaceful Kingdom
The dogs are in the backyard where they don’t molest the cats.
The cats are in the front yard where they monitor the bats
but do not dine on birds because the birds have given up
and all moved to the back yard where the young cats never sup.
The younger cats stay outside and the old cat lives within
and should the outside cats ever escape from where they’ve been,
when they’re inside, they’re bullies and steal her food and tease her.
Although, since I can’t find a type of cat food that will please her,
it’s no problem for the old cat, yet those cats are getting fat
while every day there seems to be less of the older cat.
True, the older cat is crabby and swats the young cats first,
so it’s hard for me determining which cat is the worst.
I’m tired of these war zones. I wish they’d coexist,
and I wish that I could simply tell them to desist.
Yet with man and other animals, more often you will find
they can’t exist in harmony with those who aren’t their kind.
Annie the crabby cat woke me up before Ragtag was online today, so they get their own individually prompted poem. Their prompt was “harmony.” Here’ their link if you want to play along: https://ragtagcommunity.wordpress.com/2018/12/23/rdp-sundayharmony/
Click on first photo and arrows to enlarge all.
If given a choice, my cats will always choose a pile. Then when grooming time comes, they never know the difference between them so just groom the closest body within tongue.
Ssspartan to the nth degree,
he may be lurking in a tree.
In shape he must exemplify
nature’s attempt to ssssimplify.
(No arms or legs to complicate
his lithe movement through glade or gate.)
Not limited by all those parts
that curtail our stops and starts,
his every motion unimpeded,
his conquestsss easily completed.
Under a rock, he may lie coiled.
In sssswiftness, he cannot be foiled.
Hands and feet may have their uses,
but they may lead to abuses.
Toes can stub and feet may catch
on bumps or stones. They are no match
for a ssssnake’s swift glide and ssssssting.
Limbs are not good for everything!
It’s true, a sssnake would be more harmlesss
if he had not been born armlessss!
My cats had this snake cornered near the kitchen door, proving me wrong by demonstrating that some footed creatures are a good match for a snake. Yolanda’s keen eyes brought it to my attention, and between us, we proved to be its friends. KItties were curtailed. The serpent glided on to sssafety.
The prompt words today are Spartan, limit, glade and exemplify. Here are the links:
My friend Larry Kolczak has allowed me to copy this hilarious email sent to me. I’ve been trying to convince him he should have a blog himself. Do you agree?
Six months ago, we hung these beaded curtains on our second-floor patio fence to obscure the view into the neighboring lot. Recently, …
… we started finding broken strands. We figured it was because the curtains weren’t made for outdoor use, and that sun and wind had deteriorated the nylon strings. But, that wasn’t the problem…
It turns out that many of the eco-friendly beads are acorns.
Guess who noticed?
He nips the string to get the uppermost acorn…
… which he either eats on the spot, or buries in our potted plants, and leaves us with the…
Those who meander the paths of zoos
gain exercise as they peruse
the animals by ones and twos.
Whatever pathways they may cruise
will lead them to new rendezvous:
otters as they blithely ooze
through water as if to amuse.
They watch the bowerbird as it woos
with intricate patterns it pursues,
the aardvarks, elephants and gnus.
Did Mother Nature simply choose
to create hippos and kangaroos
with the intention to bemuse
these interlopers in tennis shoes?
Does our curiosity excuse
and give us license to abuse
koala bears and caribous?
We see it nightly in the news—
the ways that all of us misuse
the wonders of nature. We refuse
to stem consumerism, excuse
pollution, fracking and more taboos.
Imprison animals in zoos,
then honor them with our reviews
of fascinated ahhhs and ooos.
The prompt word today was ooze.