Mennonite Poetry Home | Robert Martens




i hold her in my arms.
she requires consolation.
she purrs.
she'll never go outdoors, doesn't
want to go outdoors. she'll never the
feel clover on her paws, or bask
her belly in sunshine, or prowl
for sparrows. she has
all she needs, feed bowl, water dish,
litter box. an all-powerful presence
supplies her wants. she doesn't know
wind and rain. snow's a
brightness just beyond an invisible barrier.
she fears loud noises, unexpected visitors, raccoons,
lightning. she eats, sleeps,
defecates. she yearns for a leaping
world. housecat. she watches
the plangent dawn, the groan of traffic,
the flutter and scamper at dusk.

she holds me in her arms.
i require consolation.
i snore.
i'll never go outdoors, don't
elect to go outdoors. i'll never
tread tyranny's harshness, or wither
in the atomic sun, or prowl
for strangers. i have
all i need, fridge, faucet,
toilet. an all-powerful bureaucracy
supplies my wants. i don't know
blast and bullet. war's a
red stream just beyond an invisible border.
i fear loud sirens, unexpected invasions, generals,
mushroom clouds. i eat, sleep,
defecate. i yearn for a rusting
universe. houseboy. i watch
the coldboot dawn, the broken back freeway,
the call and buy at dusk.

the conspiracy's real. our
house splinters from its
foundations, topples into gravity's
bend, rides the solar wind
towards a supernova howling
like a wounded beast. we're
headed for the edge of never.
i hold her in my arms.
she purrs.

© Robert Martens




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