Black Cat in Winter

A cat's face, frosted, like a flower,
unfolds in the morning; the first hint
of the door being open and it's there,
ice melting into droplets on the whiskers, its ears
wet, like battered rose-petals. Bud nose
pushed in by frost, a nightly fight
against the great, cold, black cat.
Purring now in a glow, healthier
than morning engines starting, a rhythm
with the sparrows and robins unfreezing
from bushes and gutters. A fine mist
of steam on the window, steam
pushing back the night-time
from the garden, a pointilist cat
grey as ash, vibrates with small lights and shadows,
drying into density, gradually darker,
like cinders cooling. The pelt emerges
as smooth and soft as black petals.




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