The Little Review (littlereview) wrote,
The Little Review

Poem for Thursday and Viking Goddess

For Katy
By Rodney Jones

When Milo was a kitten
and spent the night
with us in the big bed,
curled like a brown sock
at our feet, he would
wake before daybreak,
squeak plaintively
in his best Burmese,
cat-castrato soprano,
and make bread on our stomachs
until if one of us did not rise,
sleep-walk to the kitchen
and open his can of food,
he would steal under the covers,
crouch, run hard at us,
jam his head
in our armpits,
and burrow fiercely.

Probably he meant nothing by that.
Or he meant it in cat-contrary,
just as he did not intend
drawing blood the day
he bolted out the door
and was wild again
for nearly three hours.
I could not catch him
until I knelt, wormed
into the crawl-space
under a neighbor house
and lured him home
with bits of dried fish.

Or he meant exactly what he smelled,
and smelled the future
as it transmogrified out of the past,
for he is, if not an olfactory
a highly nuanced cat—
an undoer of complicated knots,
who tricks cabinets,
who lives to upend tall
glasses of Merlot.
With his whole body,
he has censored the finest passages of Moby-Dick.
He has silenced Beethoven with one paw.
He has leapt three and a half feet
from the table by the wall
and pulled down
your favorite print by Miró.
He does not know the word no.

When you asked the vet what
kind of cat it was, she went
into the next room
came back and said,
“Havana Brown.”

The yellow eyes, the voice,
the live spirit that plays into dead seriousness
and will not be punished into goodness,
but no—

an ancient, nameless breed—

mink he says and I answer in cat.
Even if I was not
born in a dumpster
between a moldy cabbage
and an expired loaf of bread,
I too was rescued by an extravagant woman.


This poem "began with a journal note about our new kitten's habit of waking us by charging into our armpits and burrowing," Jones told "It is partly a love poem, partly an homage to Mary Oliver, and partly a brag on one cat, Milo Delassize, who entertains us and teaches us tolerance."

I had an un-thrilling day with an eye doctor appointment smack in the middle of it, which was okay as eye doctor appointments go but I discovered that they don't take our new insurance so the optometrist practice selling eye glasses connected to the office is now way out of my price range, so I need to find out who DOES take our new insurance before I get new glasses, which is a pain!

Adam is still waiting for the contract for his new apartment, so he did some chores and Paul got sent home after lunch because his office closed early for the Fourth of July. We watched some soccer together and I went out for raid hour to catch some Groudons with my local group before dinner and Logan Lucky, which has a great cast and is very funny and surprisingly heartwarming.

We are not going anywhere near DC and inflating Trump's crowd numbers in any way; instead we're going to Baltimore to the zoo and aquarium before the Inner Harbor fireworks. I took my Viking goddess from Brigid's Grove to Iceland with me to take pictures of her at waterfalls and troll gardens, so here are some of those, including one from the plane flying over snowy Greenland:

2019-05-29 16.52.16

2019-05-28 15.26.17



2019-05-29 16.44.07


2019-05-28 15.36.06

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