What Killed the Cat?

A year has passed since we walked
the edge of our fences, slow,

barefoot and in our bathrobes,
the air damp against our calves,

making small talk, our arms crossed,
looking for stray marks along

the laurel in the blue mist,
not sure what to do, or what

we were searching for, a fox
or snake, maybe a raccoon.

We saw a few matted ferns,
a spray of blood, one kitten

huddled beneath a downspout,
swishing its tail as it nosed

and flicked its tongue at the raw
peeled-back skin of its mother,

trying to kiss her back to life.