When a boy, my Dad dropped a wriggling
box of kitten into a swamp by
the Kanawha River as he had been bidden. Fifty
years later, I killed a mother
with my car, her kittens left in a warm
globe by the road.
Later still, my father read aloud for
my two pumas–
Charlie Et La Chocolaterie—
soothing them with the language
of a gentle voice. One boy likes his belly
rubbed, his hot armpits airing
along his ears, the pin-cushion paw pads drawing
and releasing. His brother sleeps
in a cardboard box on the piano,
dreaming rumbling dreams.
Eliza Callard lives with her family in her hometown of Philadelphia. She enjoys hiking and reading, and her website is elizacallard.com.