Gypsy she was born, and Gypsy she stays;
Her black-haired mama pick her up from under her armpits,
hold her up, shake her a little and say,
"Mama loves you, Spot. To the moon and back."
She say this in Romany.
Cheetah curl her lip and snarl, wavin' her paws.
This means, "back atcha, mom."
Cops pull the Gypsies over, fuck with 'em a little.
"You got a license for this here cat?" says the ex-jock-y lookin' one.
Cheetah's mama say somethin' in Romany. It ain't "Good afternoon, officer."
Animal control get called.
Cheetah's mama go nuts--
a thumb gets bit, some nuts get kicked. She get arrested, screamin'.
Her Gypsy man get backed up quick with a gun to his nose.
Cheetah ain't never been in a cage before,
leastwise one tied to the roof of a truck speedin' down the freeway.
She watch the bus gettin' further and further away behind her. It ain't a good day.
Cheetah go to foster cheetah care.
She get pitched into school.
What the feck is this?
Other kids welcome her to class by singin':
"Cheetah over there!
Cheetah got no hair!
Cheetah don't wear any underwear!"
Cheetah get in fights at first, but Cheetah always win,
so the fights stop, but nobody talk to her.
Teacher say, "what is the quadrangular hypothesis of a Mimbis angle?"
Cheetah don't know.
Out the window she go, fast as ten dollars from a sailor's pocket.
Cheetah find the city, but can't find the bus.
Cheetah real lost.
It startin' to rain and she don't like it much.
Her mama woulda threw her in the sleepin space, stick her hand under the blankets and pretend it a creepin' monster for Cheetah to get.
Things looking poorly, if you want to know.
Cheetah go to sleep in some trash behind a store.
Pretty soon, some townie poke her with a boot toe and she curl her lip n snarl.
"Who are you, Spot?"
It's Savanna, the teenage runaway. She wear a back pack and keep a knife in her boot.
Pretty soon, Cheetah find herself stuffed into the back pack,
just her dome stickin' out, watchin the streets go by.
"Looky what I found," say Savanna,
and she plop Miss Spot down in the middle of Danny's Coffee Shop.
Right away some crazy cat come up and stand there like he own that place and seventeen others, too.
It's the kitten Giuseppe Verdi.
At the closest table, a convo goin' on.
A man sayin' to a waitress, "It's in the bible. You can't argue with that. It's His word."
Waitress say, "What make you think God is a guy?"
"He just is," say the man, lookin at her like she just flew out of the nut house.
"I see," she say, walkin' away, and her smirk could win a prize at the Spring Fair.
Turns out, this place got a serial murderess,
a seriously hot dark-haired chick,
and also The Queen of the Vampires, who can shape shift into a black panther.
They also got killer coffee, reasonably priced.
The Queen of the Vampires say, "What happened, Spot? Who done you like this?"
She say it in Romany, and Cheetah's ears prick up like they on fire.
Just then some dweeb from the city walk in and say he lookin' for a truant pursuant to article blah blah and he "got to take Spot here."
Chloe roll up her music magazine and brain him with it.
"Like hell!" she say. She ain't known for her subtle ways.
The dark haired chick grit her teeth. "Mister, you are SO workin' my last good nerve."
The QOTV say nothin, she just shape shift and fly through the damn air like a giant black bird with huge fangs.
Over goes the dweeb, like a bowling pin been hit by the space shuttle.
She drag him outside and down to the cop shop.
She shape shift back, and stand there lookin fine and sayin "Here's your man. Don't ever send him back."
Back at Danny's, Cheetah got a whole pile of mamas now.
They teach her what they know, which is
mostly sass and illegal junk.
Chloe sing, "Spot's a rebel and she's never gonna be any good..."
Everybody hoot n holler and whoop and so forth.
One day soon, all the Danny's girls gonna take a road trip.
They all gonna wear Blues Brothers sunglasses, and carry Tarot decks.
They gonna find the bus.
They gonna find the cops what done this, and then
they gonna open a can of whup ass.
They gonna take Cheetah home, Spot the Snot who they'll have raised up like their own,
and she will know all that they know, and be all different and brassy and high steppin' down all the days of her life.
On that righteous day of homecomin',
Cheetah's mama gonna cry and clap and
be so proud.
for Izy's Out Of Standard challenge at Real Toads: rebel girl
Poem inspired by this photograph taken by the matchless Mama Zen: