There's something about the lick of a cat
rough and gentle
that speaks of quiet nights and peace.
(Even though I hate the sight of that cat,
she's old and mean and doesn't like to cuddle.)
There are times when she pretends well – acts
like one would expect a cat to act, and yet
at that last second.
The split before your hand reaches the back of her neck
the pretense shattered, your hand touches nothing.
And so, each day. You'd think I'd learn
the cat doesn't like to be touched.
Yet I try, I get sucked into the calmness that surrounds
a sleeping cat
Teased by burnished black fur, glossy under the overhead light,
lulled into believing that this once, she'll capitulate.
Such is the curse of eternal optimism. Even the rats in the maze; even Pavlov
was successful in teaching his dogs the meaning of repetition.
Here I am, stuck in the endless loop of choosing to believe the best,
even from an old black cat that hates the world. Lucky for me she doesn't have claws.