Untitled Metaphor #9

The cat who has found mercy looks
Contentedly, with golden eyes
Half-lidded in her purring bliss,
Past fingers stroking down her back,
Her neck thrust up insistently
To beg I scratch her ears or chin—
Then wanders off to roll, legs up,
Still purring, ’round upon the rug.

Ah! Would, O Sovereign Lord, that I might find
Such mercy in your house as she in ours!
That, when I go astray and seek my ill,
I might be firmly, lovingly held back—
To, like her, have not aught to do but praise!

Our cat, RuhamahI wrote this yesterday, after a particularly striking glimpse of our cat’s eyes in (more or less) the pose the first few lines describe. Her name is “Ruhamah,” which explains the opening line. (This picture is of her about seven years ago.) But after that initial spark, most of the ideas here are ones that friends have used, including Aubrey’s post in March.

As always, I earnestly welcome your comments, suggestions, questions, critique, or other feedback about this or any other part of my work. (In other words, if you liked this poem, or you didn’t like it, or it made you think of something, or … please leave a comment to let me know.) If you liked this, you can follow this blog, which includes one of my poems every Friday, or read other poems I’ve written here on my blog (starting with those linked from one of the “archive ” installments, since the full archive is by now, at well over a hundred poems, somewhat daunting); I’d especially like to know, as part of my preparations for a collection, which poems you think are my best. You may also share it with others, subject to my sharing policy.

This poem is also archived on my wiki.


2 thoughts on “Untitled Metaphor #9

  1. I loved this, in part because I own a cat and have seen them do this exact thing. You captured it well. I almost laughed at the “rolling legs up” bit, that’s so true. ;)

    • Thank you, Aubrey; I’m glad you liked it.

      Ruhamah actually usually isn’t this affectionate. When we rescued her she had severe trust issues we had to patiently work to overcome, and even now she usually isn’t willing to just stand there and be petted, let alone sit in a lap. She’d rather wander away for a bit, come back and demand attention for a moment, wander away again, and so on. So the encounter this poem describes was something of a slight anomaly.

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