Thursday, January 1, 2015

The Cat Who Spoke

Missus Doctor Figg-Millett was dusting her husband's study,
dusting, in fact, the skeleton of a re-articulated cat,
when, without really thinking about it,
she complained aloud about not having a staff.

"Fuck you," said the fleshless feline.
"I have no staff either, and it was quite a useful one.
Look at me now. How can I love? Eat? Spray?
Your husband is an idiot.
All humans are idiots.
They value the branch but burn the leaves,
prize the package but throw away the contents.
So, fuck you and the good doctor, too."

Cats rarely mince words.

Doctor Figg-Millett arrived home from his practice to find
Missus Doctor Figg-Millett had taken to her bed.
"Are you ill?' he inquired uncertainly from the doorway.
"I want a cat," she replied.
"Nonsense. Cats shed."
"Fuck you," said Missus Doctor, shocking him with the unwonted curse word.
Then she added, "I want a lover,
and some opium. Maybe even an automobile."

Cats and women have often been seen as similar.

Doctor Figg-Millett hoped that some broth and a cessation
from reading novels might ease his wife's malaise,
but as the days passed, she shat in the potted palm,
and destroyed the curtains in trying to climb them.
One afternoon, she gave herself a climax,
then stared at her fingers in astonishment.
She even remarked that women certainly deserved the franchise,
and that's when Doctor Figg-Millett had had enough.

How he fell down the stairs is anybody's guess.
No one really credited Missus Doctor's claim
that a cat had tripped him half way down,
as the Figg-Milletts owned no cat. 
Yes, she did gesture with her cigarette at the re-articulated tom sitting upon the doctor's desk,
but really, how absurd!
"It can say 'fuck you'," she added,
and then seconded the demised feline's alleged sentiments herself.

That night, the various policemen complained to their wives
about the whole unpleasant business,
and the wives listened in demure silence 
except for a certain Missus Elroy MacDougal, who requested a cat.


hedgewitch said...

This reminds me a bit of many of your poems that address the theme of frustrated self-realization, but despite the fact that several portions made me laugh like crazy, it seems to have a a more bitter bite to it underneath. The skeleton cat makes a great alter-ego/metaphor, and the fate of the not-so-good doctor is as satisfying as it is hilarious. Happy New Year, Shay, and may the road rise up to meet you in the best of ways.

Kerry O'Connor said...

I think I have just witnessed the start of a revolution!

TexWisGirl said...

oh, i like it. probably too much. ;)

Helen said...

What an incredible poem ~ beginning the New Year on a note so high I can barely hear it! Have a good one, Shay!

Lynn said...

As always - you make me smile!

Kenn Merchant said...

I really enjoyed reading this poem because the presence of power is so eminent and radiates from the screen/page. Beautiful! :)

Sherry Blue Sky said...

Well, if this is January i, I can hardly wait to see what poems will come this year!!!!! LOL. Grinning.

Mama Zen said...

I want a cat.

Sioux said...

Very funny and very pointed.

Shadow said...

Ha, ha, superb!

Daryl said...

no analysis just saying i have 3 cats

Anonymous said...

This is flipping awesome. The stanza that ends "and that's when Doctor Figg-Millett had had enough" is by far my favorite part.

my heart's love songs said...


and you know how fond i am of the word fuck...

grapeling said...

I - oh - phew. ~