by John Grey
It’s the biggest test of his love yet.
He must bury the tiny precious cat.
She supervises while he slams
a shovel into the tough New England soil.
He holds the shoe-box, make-shift coffin
containing the remains, while she says
a silent prayer.
To her, it’s sadness made rite.
For him, it’s the height of the ridiculous
and his prayers are a direct request of God:
keep the neighbors indoors,
away from any windows.
Safely ensconced in its hole,
she sprinkles a handful of dirt
on the box’s surfaces.
He completes the job,
then jabs a wooden cross into the earth
to mark forever the place
where affection overcame embarrassment,
worms devoured a kitty’s corpse.