I’m five when my dream arrives,
A tortoiseshell cat on our porch.
Prepare a saucer of milk, tongue laps, the sound like kisses.
I am over the moon

My father barrels out the screen door,
His foot strikes her belly.
Watch her arc as she sails through the air.
I clean up the dish of milk

My father kept a pet chicken as a child in Coal Town No. 2.
He rose with the sun to gather her eggs, play.
She was dinner one night. His father laughed.
There is so much I don’t understand.