The Wanderer


The nuns were missing their cat, Beelzebub.

When they held him against their black habits,

he seemed to vanish as thoroughly as worldly temptations.

The nuns bake Russian black bread

and share with Beelzebub, who is what he eats. 

"Such a naughty kitty," scolds Sister Robert, more fond than mortified.


Where is Beelzebub? Is he

walking up and down the earth, seeking the grail

of a fish skelly in a silver garbage pail?

Or is he wandering the tile rooftops,

closer to Heaven than the nuns?


Beelzebub is visiting Bathsheba, a woman of certain skills.

She picks him up and holds him against her camisole

where he vanishes as thoroughly 

as a married man in the morning.

"Such a naughty kitty," she scolds, but smiles.

Beelzebub does not blink, but rumbles like Barry White.


Where is Beelzebub, why here he is,

back from wherever he was 

and smelling like Tabu.

He jumps on the table and inspects a loaf,

vanishing behind it like a hidden desire. 

"Such a naughty kitty," says Sister George, but she loves him as God loves her,

Beyond reason, and forever.

_________


for The Sunday Muse #148 where I am hosting this week.




Comments

  1. Oh WOW, do I love this story that made me smile all the way down the page - "vanishes as thoroughly as a married man in the morning" just made my day. That old Beelzebub - how would a nun survive without him?

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  2. This is SO much fun ... jiggling around in my chair trying to dance and read at the same time. Epic fail. Music off, concentrating on the words, the vibe keeps sneaking in ... my sister's fragrance is Tabu.

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  3. Ah, that old Beelzebub, what stories he could tell. I loved every bit of this!!

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  4. For reasons mysterious, I can comment here, but I cannot make a general comment to The Muse.

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  5. Shay--The bit about Barry White, Tabu... and the ending (a perfect ending). A cat and nuns--that's a pairing I wouldn't have thought of.

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  6. A marvelous story of vanishing and appearing how much we love a mystery.

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  7. "walking up and down the earth, seeking the grail /of a fish skelly in a silver garbage pail" and "closer to Heaven than the nuns" are tremendous lines. But I might like "where have you been my blue-eyed poem" even better, LOL!

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  8. 😁what a wandering kitty

    Happy Sunday

    Much💗love

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  9. As always, you manage to play a layered tune here, full of nuance and the slyness of Beelzebub himself. The lines qbit quoted are standouts, but I personally love the invisibility metaphor, disappearing behind/into that which seems at least to the naked eye, to be us, like "a married man in the morning." One of your best,Shay--all the more so perhaps for its lighter than air playfulness.

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  10. Mysterious, captivating, and the list goes on. This tale is one you have to follow to the end. The imagery takes you by the hand and does just that. I love your poetic tales my friend!!

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  11. “When they held him against their black habits” ... clever

    Love the thoroughly/worldly rhyme.

    “seeking the grail
    of a fish skelly in a silver garbage pail” ... so enjoyable to read aloud

    “Beelzebub is visiting Bathsheba, a woman of certain skills.
    She picks him up and holds him against her camisole
    where he vanishes” ... lol, what an interesting piece of the plot line

    “vanishing behind it like a hidden desire” ... I like that.

    “she loves him as God loves her,
    Beyond reason, and forever.” ... I love the ending so much. Very moving and tender, the way someone can love another even when the “Beelzebub” lives in darkness and is unhealthy for the loving party. Like loving a husband who is forever unfaithful or a brother who is addicted to drugs.

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  12. I enjoyed the adventures of the black cat. They are mysterious when they disappear and reappear. I like where your mind took him on his absence and upon his return.
    JadeLi@tao-talk

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  13. Who could not love a cat? I love him and envy his wandering. You and I are the only ones I've found who named the cat. You Beelzebub cat lives his name. (I played Jezebel sung by Frankie Laine on YouTube this afternoon, I think we are all going nuts.)
    Shay, thank you for finding this neat photo prompt for us, it was fun. I hope you will forgive me today, I was practicing writing, bad job though, some Gothic Fiction Poetry.
    ..

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  14. "vanishes as thoroughly as a married man in the morning"

    Love this, Shay! He is a discriminating cat with varied tastes.

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  15. glad to see you are still writing, i haven't read any of your poems for many years now, so i have catching up to do, i've alway been a fan (all be it a shy fan, and rarely leave comments) always love the quirky nature and humor of your poems. i'll be back for more

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