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1.

There's a gray-and-white
female.
She likes people, even
with the scars on her face,
her burned ear.

 

2.

There was a thin
male.
He'd disappear for weeks,
having adventures.

His teeth stuck out of his face.
They were very big and white.
Looking at his teeth
you'd think he would live
a long time.

I waited for him.
Three weeks,
six.

At night the coyotes howl.
The sound is long and rasping
like a pulled-apart machine
still whirring
while it bleeds oil

 

3.

Long after I moved out of her house
my mother and I were talking about
reincarnation.

I asked her if she thought
the lives remembered each other.

She looked for a long time out the window at a
mama cat
with her two kittens
(they go everywhere together at that age), said

I hope so

 

4.

An old male hunts.
In plain sight
he walks
slowly and deliberately
toward a crowd of quail.

They are gone like vapor,

their warning screeches filling the valley.
Satisfied, he lays belly-up
in the dirt.

He's still got it.

The ants claim the food I keep leaving out
for him.

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