The tomcat writhes on his perch, playful.
In the corner, within paw’s reach
a dappled spider dangles from
a silken line and he wants it.
Belly up now, he bobs his bushy head,
looks my way and tells me about it.
More than he wants to eat the spider,
he wants me to know he wants it.
Indeed, he will never swat
the legged thing from its web
but I approach all the same,
whisper good boy and caress his fur
until he nuzzles a damp nose against my palm.
It was never about the spider.
Which is free now, escaped to some dark corner.
Still, I lean in, call him good hunter,
Scratch two fingers under his chin.
And the tomcat closes his eyes and purrs.