What the Tabby Scratched Today
The lampshade on the end table
is lopsided. In the room, there are
signs of violence: a spilt vase,
the flowers crushed by fallen
books, the torn curtain, blood
on the sofa, animal fur on the rug.
My skirt is frayed at the hem,
the sole of my left boot threatens
to come off. The lights have gone out
the way a chameleon's tongue
furls back into its mouth.
A door flaps; this house has bats
at night. On the porch, a swirling
wind drags the stainless bowl,
the noise like phantom chains in
an opera the public snubbed.
On my mother's desk, there's an old
Gratta e Vinci ticket. The price,
2500 lire, is half-covered by socks
she failed to mend. A black labrador
licks its wounds by the dying fire.
Arlene Ang lives in Venice, Italy where she edits the Italian edition of Niederngasse (http://www.niederngasse.com). Her poetry has recently been published in Persephone's Moon, Stride, Dublin Quarterly, BiMagazine.org, Tattoo Highway and Ghoti Magazine. Three of her poems have been nominated for the 2006 Pushcart Prize anthology.