I politely asked a woman
– whose house stood sturdy
on the side of a road
that for years transgressed
the norms zip codes imposed –
if I could take a picture.

“My house?”
she blinked, confused.

I pointed to her cat
– whose eyes were like cups
emptied by children
eager for grape juice
and tropical punch in summer –
and I wanted to walk a bit closer.

“Oh, of course. Take him!”
she waved her hands, listless.

Tail like a caterpillar
– still, and wondering
if I was another weirdo
crawling into bed with socks
who ate my Pop-Tarts untoasted –
quivered itself to rest.

“Thank you, but I’ve got two.”
I frowned as the cat crouched rigidly.

Cat No. 55 of the 500 Cats Project

4 thoughts on “permission

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