Life And Death When Nobody’s Looking –
There were feral cats on my two hundred
And fifty mile route through rural upper New York State
– One Night a week, on Fridays
The Weekend Papers came out at midnight
and we, the victims of economic warfare,
had until 8 am to deliver them.
One night, in the middle
I saw a cat
run out from a roadside hiding spot
right under the back wheels of a car
whose driver never saw what happened
– I pulled over and stopped
got out and knelt down beside the cat
Her back was broken
her insides were crushed
from the stomach back
I tried to comfort her, what?
Talk to her – Tell her she was on her way
To the Kitten Happy Hunting Grounds?
– all she wanted to do was crawl away and die in peace
And me, with my human sentiments and sensibilities
hoped I wasn’t scaring her to death while I knelt there and cried
– She tried her damnedest to crawl – drag herself to cover
But she couldn’t move at all
I stayed with her until the light went out in her eyes
And twenty years later I can’t forget that moment
– Can’t stop hoping I didn’t make her final moments in this life unbearable-
I hope she understands.
—– Jim Wellington