For Spike

For Spike
On a white bed
Bleeding sickness
The old cat sleeps
A still compass in the night.
What tiger dreams rake
Through your slow
retracting claws,
Young cat in treetime?

There’s tree bark
On your whiskers and dew from
spider’s web wise one.
You open one green eye
As lethal as a
Sea snake
And then return.

You’ll not stay long now
These long year mauled by
Time and tragedy and
You have kept faith with me.

I will hear you still
The slow lashing tail
Across stars and time
Memory will bring me home.

Poem for Spike