The Mystery of Cats

 /   /  By Emma Birches
Stone Soup Magazine
May/June 2003

By Marley Powell

Cleaning yourself
as if the world is just fine
Of course you don’t know about September 11
or the war
You don’t know about the terrorists
or do you

Is that mangy dog down the street the terrorist you fear

What does someone of your small stature
think of the world
Do you look at the humans around you
and think you’re much smarter because you can hunt
smell a rat and see in the dark
Maybe you think all we can do is open a can

How would you manage all these wars between countries
Would you talk out your problems
or use a more violent approach

Grady enters the room
and I watch the hair on your back rise
You don’t move
He doesn’t move
This could be a showdown
But no

The moment passes and you resume your cleaning

I breathe a sigh of relief

What would the world be like if ruled by a cat
say, like you, Stripes
Would everyone be ordered to bathe for hours on end

You look up at me
with clear eyes
and I’m curious to know
Do you actually reason or do you just look smart

You know I’ve always suspected
you have the ability to think and also
the ability to pretend to think

I see a smile flitting across your face
You get up and go outside
Even though that dog could still be there
you show no fear

The Mystery of Cats marley powell

Marley Powell, 12
Los Angeles, California

About the Author

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