The cat drops a mouse at your feet
as if he figures that will please you.
The poor creature’s neck is broken,
stomach split and oozing blood.
He’s concluded that this desecration
is right up your emotional alley.
You wonder what you ever did
to make him think that.

According to that tabby,
you’re like some malicious potentate
who orders his minions
to go out and kill his enemies,
report back with their corpses,
for display as a warning to others
or simply because you relish
the gore, the stench,
the grim finality of violent death.

He’s seen you with your girlfriend.
He’s observed you entertaining family.
He’s watched you sleeping, eating,
reading, bathing, dressing and undressing,
and sometimes just hanging out.
Think back over everything you’ve done lately.
Stop at the point when last you made
no apology for your actions.

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John Grey is an Australian poet, US resident. Recently published in New Plains Review, Perceptions and the anthology, No Achilles with work upcoming in Big Muddy Review, Gargoyle, Coal City Review and Nebo.
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Image by Yintan or CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons