Thursday, March 26, 2009

Dubious fealty

Thanks Christopher, again, for the inspiration. Yes, yes I know. It's not your cat. Not one of mine, either. I don't let them kill birds anymore; they have their own bird-proof yard to lurk in.

Dubious fealty

You think it’s just the tins of fish
I stick around for, that any lap will do.
A cat’s loyalty goes as far
as her stomach, you say, scratching me
behind the ears
before you toss me out the door
to sit on the neighbour’s fence, or under
a low bush napping until
the hummingbirds come round,
those little jewelled snacks.
I’m the first to admit
I wouldn’t pass by an offer
of cream and kibble, but you see
old man, just because I take it
wherever I can get it
doesn’t make it love.

Rachel Westfall
March 25, 2009

13 comments:

Woman in a Window said...

Love that bit of wit in the last line.

Lirio said...

oh i laugh
good one rachel

RachelW said...

Thanks you two! :) Cats are wonderful, but oh so fickle at times.

Poetikat said...

As they get older they get weirder. I have one who won't stay off my lap - drives me batty and she likes to suck on blankets (taken from mom too early) another one gets these weird moony fits where she suddenly takes to charging up and down the stairs in the middle of the night, complete with high-pitched shrill little mews, another one who body-slams us when we're sleeping so he can get more body heat and another one who goes down to the basement just for fun and emits this blood-curdling whine. We often (just for laughs) lie in bed an pretend we don't have any cats as we listen to the creepy noises and huddle closer together. Hee hee.

Kat

RachelW said...

Oh, how this made me laugh, Kat! When I was a kid, I had a black cat called Morgan who also used to suck on blankets (taken away from his mama too early, too). He was quite... mentally challenged, actually. He lived 21 human years.

Right now, we have Chairman Mao (he says his name is Mao) who swims in the dogs' water bucket, along with other weird habits, like chasing his tail around in circles in the bathtub, and licking the dogs. We also have a night-time rampager (the pure white one) who yelps Meer, meer as she charges around (so her name is meer-meer!) And then we have the elegant, mature pure-black Julius who presides over it all with dignity. He puts up with a remarkable amount of skull-duggery, considering he was an only cat for the first decade of his life.

Karen said...

Okay - I have the weirdest, bulimic old Siamese who started life as Sophia but became Mister Kitty after a month or so. When he was young, he stole and hid every hair accessory he could find -- little scrunchie bands, hair barrettes, headbands -- and plucked every pink silk flower he ever saw from arrangements that came into the house. I'd say (s)he was a little confused!
Now, he's just angry all the time!

Ghost Dansing said...

i keep coming back to look at the beautiful kitty kats, but apparently my last comment either experienced a technical problem or wasn't approved.... so i'll try again...... stray cats song

RachelW said...

Karen, that's too funny! I love how cats have such unique and strange personalities. Catonalities. ;) Is your cat really bulimic? One of ours is, too (Meer meer the ghost cat).

Ghost, thanks for trying it again... your first comment didn't show up at all. Thanks for the link!

Cat-Man too said...

Meow to Ying & Yang...

There was a cat in my life called Kitty
who was very pretty
chasing dogs as if he was God
then one day he went away never to say goodbye
Why, Kitty, why have you gone?
Pretty Kitty...

Karen said...

Believe me, he's bulimic -- and vindictive. He leaves his little gifts right in the path from the bed to the bathroom...

Catvibe said...

That last line is not about cats is it? Love it! Purrrrr.

frozenwell said...

No dramatization..i haaaattte cats!but i love this poem:) i too like the 'bit of wit' at the last part...
-narendra

RachelW said...

Pretty kitty, where are you now? The sun is shining, the chickadees are nesting, the ravens are heading for the hills. Pretty kitty, where do you prowl? I hear the coyotes sing their eerie song each night, right by my door; they give me such a fright!

Karen, Meer meer is bulimic, but not vindictive... she leaves her daily rows of partly chewed crumbles wherever she happens to be at the moment- on the phone book, on the heating vent, in the water dish, or right back into the food dish. The dogs clean quite a bit of it up, saving me the hassle. ;)

Cat, yes it is, but it could be read otherwise, too.

Narendra, welcome!