December 2006: Iowa City, IA
We came today to pick up Auntie
From her apartment filled with
Nearly four decades of memories.
Then I saw her…
Her eyes closed in all serenity
Sitting in silence on the window sill
Facing an old pot of half dead plant
Bathed in the pale morning sun
Savoring peace this Christmastime.
(And reminding me of Carl Sandburg’s “Fog”
Except this one doesn’t move on.)
Auntie must have guessed
What was on my mind.
“Bone marrow cancer,” she said.
“Gone blind. Just hangin’ on...”
Bone marrow cancer…
Caused by feline leukemia virus or FeLV
So much like the AIDS virus
And all its symptoms.
So much like Freddie Mercury with AIDS
Who bore pain in all bravery.
The only difference may be this:
Freddie was held and kissed in the end.
Whilst this cat will remain like a cold Sphinx
Without a caress or a kiss.