The Cat's Mother

The third person, she found,
Was the easiest—
She could delight in the color of her own bruises,
She could strike a match and watch her possessions burn—
Under the sweet water-thin veil of she,
She could be anyone; and indeed
She often was.

More often, though, she was she,
Detaching, fantasizing,
Failing to connect and connecting
Too perfectly.

Long ago she had decided
I was the refuge of the very childish
And the very mature,
And sought to distance herself from the both of us.

She dragged herself over shes
She found elsewhere, pressing hard
Into the pages, starving to find
Her reflection there.

She remembered generations of women
Smiling faintly over folded arms,
Watching a whine form in her young mouth—
“Who is she?” they asked, eyebrows arched,
Instructing with words that had no meaning:
She is the cat’s mother.”

photograph by Lina Scheynius


M. said...

Great concept. Flow and process. Takes reading it a couple of times to understand effectively. You're on to something.

Kate Horowitz said...

I wasn't so sure about this one. I like the concept a lot a lot, but it's going to take a great deal of work before it resembles a finished poem. On the other hand, if I do decide to submit to that Yale Series of Younger Poets thing, I thought this would make (when finished) a fantastic titular poem. I mean, over half my stuff is inexplicably in the third person.

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