We could not separate his
death from the multi-colored
carpet. His bones , a disintegration
of the sound any creature
makes when it seeks finality.

His single orb opened and closed
like an SOS sent from a sinking
ship; the only indication of his fight
for a fleeting breath.

If only he had headed for the
unobstructed light that led
to his invariable freedom. If only
he hadn’t embraced the darkness
starving for want and need,
he would still be ravaging my garden,
stealing seed, blood-letting the insides
of tomatoes, leaving its wrinkled fleshy husk.

Maybe cats brought forth
his demise, chasing him like a toy
mouse on a string, not knowing
the rules of the game that ended
a lot like Steinbeck’s Lenny,
who loved a thing too much
killing it with a hug and a stroke
of his suffocating brow.

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