"That Cat" by Carol Park

I scribble lines in my mind

about the feline invading

my backyard. How the white and turd

brown thing leaves poop in my

veggie garden, how its paws cover up

my baby chard sprouts. How it possesses

gall to stare past glass and taunt me and my

poodle—too small to give chase, obstructed.

But still, near that caramel cat, pink jewels

crowd close as glad congregants. Exponential blooms

crown emerald stalks, each pink flower tiny

as a baby’s nail. And every summer more hyacinths

lure me in and belt out choruses,

of beauties now and coming.

Carol Park’s homes range from suburbs to wilderness. Six years in Tokyo and Kobe, Japan greatly altered this California girl. Hiking, gardening, mentoring, and reading are her joys. Work is split between teaching ESL, literary endeavors, community, and the hearth. A multitude of friends from various countries nurture her. Her MFA comes from Seattle Pacific University. Her poetry has been published in SLANT, Minerva Rising, The Haight Ashbury Journal, Black Fox Literary, MiGoZine, and Monterey Review. The books Viral Verse: Poetry of the Pandemic include her poems, as will the forthcoming collection, New Contexts: 2. Read more at CarolPark.us and sign up for a monthly story letter.