Ode to Rijik

     Influenced by “Ode to Mi Gato” and, like the original poem, dedicated to a pet cat that I loved. Rijik couldn’t regularly come inside our home as we had people allergic to cats in the family, but I let him know that he was so loved no matter what.

Rijik (Рыжик) — an endearing Russian name for anyone orange-haired.

*****

My Rijik

My dear, beloved pet

I represent this song

From me to you

And an ode too…

*

Ever since

I first set eyes

On your flame-colored pelt,

I saw how you were intelligent:

You walk in quiet dignity

You are patient as you stalk

While catching prey

As you silently crouch

Then WAIT,

Green eyes flaring

And muscles braced and tense

And then,

Then

A flicker of prey

Fire-cat leaps

 So

  High…

   And finish!

That’s how my outsider cat

In the midst of cold nights

Blazing heats

Wears fire

And a heart of instinct,

Bares his teeth

From cruel nature

With his survival skills flaring

Like his flame pelt.

*

Yet my fire cat

Takes a part

As

Warm in heart.

He loves Twolegs,

He loves us,

We feed him cat-food-and-milk

In addition

We feed him our love

And he rubs and curls up

Full with satisfaction

And happiness

When he is among us,

With us.

And when I grasp his paw

In his sleep

And I breathe in his scent

He doesn’t mind

But shifts closer

And closer

And I see this tight bond

Between him and me

Me and him.

*

Orange-Haired is my best pet

With his flame-colored fur,

Bright blazing eyes,

Quiet, humble dignity

And he never complains

When his fate leaves him outdoors

Like a wildcat

But inside,

He remembers this bond

Between us.

I’ll always reach

My paw out for him

And Rijik,

My own,

Beloved

Rijik

Will always reach for me.

                                                                                                                                   -T.W

*****

R.I.P Rijik

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