So today Musashi, my animal companion, turns eight years old. This is as old as he’s ever been, though he would be the first to tell you that I am “way olderer” than him, as in “like elebenty.”
Meanwhile, in other news, a blizzard has just come in on little cat feet and is threatening to drop a foot of snow on much of Southern New England, particularly our little part of it, Boston. Boston public schools, Northeastern University, Episcopal Divinity School, Emerson College, Brandeis University, New England Conservatory—just to name a very few—have closed for the day. But not MIT, in part because not Harvard. Sigh.
On His Eighth Birthday, Musashi Poeminates
Cry havoc! And let slip the dogs of war. –Shakespeare, Julius Caesar
Cry havoc! And let slip the cats of winter,
Chasing the icy wind across parking lots,
Down streets, up trees into the branches
That only months ago wore leaves like green
Fur. February, that month cruelest to those of us
Who never spell easily, tightens its grip,
With every flurry a kitten ready and willing
To ravage your toes with her tiny claws.
Havoc is coming. The schools all know it,
The big men who drive the snowplows all
Know it, the bus drivers for whom havoc is
A daily burden, they know it too. And I,
Lying reflectively in my turquoise catbed,
Contemplating the existential drift, I too
Know the true havoc that is the lack of my
Housekeeper, soccer partner, butler,
Just because she has mad writing skills
And her school, like a German Shepherd
Facing off with a Rottweiler, all growl
And lack of poetry, refuses to accept
How weather makes fools of us all
Sometimes. The snow comes down,
An unfurling of fluffy white cats, stretching,
Shedding, everywhere, and all day.
Photo by Jack Siberine.