Ode to Midnight, a cat

I buried that cat, I did
When she died
Put her corpse in a cardboard box
Dug a hole
With the numbness only an adoptee would comprehend
Uncaring, nonchalance
And into that hole I placed the box
She was my first pet to go
(the gerbil is a tale for another poem)
More than thirty years ago
And I set about my task
Feeling very grown-up
Into the pile of loose dirt
I thrust my spade

That first shovelful
Caved in the box top
And she lay there
And it hit me
My loss overwhelmed me
And with tears I laid her to rest
With each shovelful on her dark grey fur
And even after all that

Only now do I let myself miss you



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