Fine Dining / alan c. smith

Scales, guts, eyes, tails
and all manner of minor and major
fishy parts strewn about the boatyard’s
dock; remnants of rockfish,
porgy, shark and Pussy’s favorite,
snapper.  Evil smelling nastiness
to all passersby of humankind
but for cats a most valuable find,
an aromatic event of the highest
order, an easy feast with little
but chewing and swallowing to be
done, a bit of deboning perhaps,
an integral and most relaxing
part of the fun.  As the last fisherman
swaggers away, the bravest of the cats
arrives, not Mannix or Pussy
but they are close behind,
the always connected twosome,
incessantly entwined, out to dine
side by side, waterside, at Burchall’s Cove.
The other feasters stay far away
from the confusing Pussy,
the genteel stray, with his
odd enchanting scent and strange
mix of masculine and feminine
cat traits, and the fierce fighter
Mannix who has earned their
fear but still they will not nix their
aversion to his absent tail.
The pair, however, only shines eyes for
dinner and each other.  Pussy
grabs the choicest chunk of tuna
and, with the grace of dragonflies,
jumps on top of the barnacled
bottom of an old boat, grounded
and landlocked.  Mannix follows
with a heavy hollow thud
and together, wolfing like
two pups, they mash it up.

•••

Alan C. Smith is a Bermudian writer, performer, and visual artist.  He has been published in POUI, In Our Own Words: A Generation Defining Itself, Caribbean Writer, Under the Moon and Over the Sea: A Collection of Caribbean Poems,Poems United: A Commonwealth Anthology, Bermuda Anthology of Poetry, Chroma, Wildriver Review, Cock No. 7 and other publications.

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