a quantum of holiness

a little vagrant sleeps under a church ladder
shares his bedding with a lame puppy and deaf adder
he has never tasted sweets or sugar scones
his usual dinner is leavings, skin and bones

one beautiful summer day right after the mass
someone spat a throat lozenge onto the grass
it shined beneath the sun like a real gem
blameless, faceted, wet from mucous phlegm

little vagrant retrieved the lozenge with trembling hand
unbelievably happy as though he’d won a big grant
but he wasn’t the only one who had reached the prize
the puppy was looking at him with pleading eyes

some people aren’t dogmatic, have never attended church
their lives can seem useless, their family’s honour besmirch
but on that day it was the lord’s supper under church ladder
little vagrant shared his first candy with lame puppy and deaf adder

 

by TETIANA ALEKSINA
© All rights reserved 2018

Deuteronomy: something that Moses and Eliot hushed up

A tiny, black Kitten took a leisurely stroll down a drowsy, prestigious street. Kitten didn’t seem lost or panicked. I would even say that Kitten was rather focused, as if looking for something.

Finally, Kitten chose a cute little porch adorned with dried twigs, pumpkins and autumnal blooms, and climbed onto it. Kitten sat a little bit, and then delved into some unsolicited mail which was tossed around, as if to fill the time.

A passing dog stopped to look at Kitten, then it bristled and started to bark. Kitten ignored this while continuing to pore over a leaflet with ads of whistling kettles.

The door opened a crack and from it an annoyed woman’s voice exclaimed, “Boo! Leave it!” Kitten meowed softly. The voice then changed like the wave of a wand. “Oh… kitty kitty! Just look at this poopsie!” A moment later, two hands scooped Kitten up.

Kitten became a real consolation to the old woman. She fussed over Kitten all the days and nights. She doted on Kitten. And… you know how it happens, yes? Their love was like butter of the herd, and milk of the sheep with the fat of lambs. Like the rams of the breed of Basan. And goats with the marrow of wheat. Drink like the purest blood of the grape. Blah, blah, blah…

And it was good.

Could you blame her? Me neither. Let who is without sin be the first to cast a stone. Love is a tricky thing and you should think twice before you scoop up a tiny kitten from your porch. Where lies the boundary between selfless care and careless selfishness? Whom do we love? Ourselves in the object of love, or the object of love in us? Little black kittens, who slept on your pillow, grow up and occupy your bedroom…

A boombox filled the air with the treacly backbeat of a musical. The digestive repose of a feline’s gastronomy must never be broken whate’er may befall.

That huge black Cat with coruscant fur lazily swayed in a rocking chair in front of the fireplace. The tiny grandma snuggled on his lap, snoring softly.

 

by TETIANA ALEKSINA
© All rights reserved 2016