He only comes out as often as a full moon--
aflame in his tyger coat, my fire cat.
I take him as a sign of something auspicious
those nights he slinks up onto my porch
acting nonchalant, looking for attention.
He's feral which means you don't touch him
as he does figure eights around yours ankles,
barely brushing them with his long white whiskers.
If you move he'll spit or take a swipe at you,
so you stand there until he finishes his ritual,
then drops off into the darkened lawn,
burning a trail behind him before disappearing
into the purple embrace of the elderberry bush.
copyright 2001 Phoebe Claire Publishing, LLC All rights reserved