Portait of a You

Slammed, into a wall there to brew their no-child sadness, easy burial, quiet thoughts…or none at all. The animals would be waiting at home, indifferent gazes behind net curtains. Knowing full well that Sparrow and Maude will be home tonight, before it’s too late, and will feed them happily. Donations sent to cancer trust. Both families have suffered much. Though the disease had torn them all to pieces, Sparrow and Maude were saved this fate. They were caught on the A361, to lose control at 75 miles per hour, just outside of Knowstone. A local cabbie saw them careen, both seemed to hunch their shoulders shortly before being thrown clear through the windscreen. But no one wants to think about the pain, and whether or not one lived longer, by seconds, than the other. Whether or not it was Maude, perhaps even Sparrow, that screamed the others name.

And they will lick their paws, these fluffy two, each reminding itself that they had known food. And soon, when the big ones return, their stomachs will be full once again. Each briefly casts a glance, indifferent but minutely concerned, to see if the other is having the same, troubled thoughts.

And the weeks rolled away, the cat flap made its last noise, trapping brother and sister out in the cold, to fend for themselves; mice, birds, stolen scraps.

They were so upset, both of the little ones, that the cats had left the house. Their uncle and aunt were dead and gone and so was the dream of cuddles and games with the cats. And as they cried, each looking at the other to see if they are both having the same, troubled thoughts, the future reached inside the room, claiming their joy for another time.

The memories that faded long before your letter, are opened more like wound than paper. So I ask now whether you might have thought before drawing blood.

I kept the paper in a tin, with trinkets that brought her closer than no funeral. And never sent the reply, not proper, no, but the painless horizon picks out no silhouette from the past, obstructing the road to the sun.

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