Patterned Chaos

Through my dreams the cat was leaping,

Calico patchwork, like the old quilt

beneath which I laid, silent, sleeping

as childhood memories brimmed and spilt.

Hind-legs thrusting, her forepaws splayed

to catch herself after a bold spring;

gentle in grace, yet deadly made

by the forge of Life, that ruthless thing.

Beautiful motion, artful form,

instinct and cunning made manifest,

yet snuggling, purring, friendly, warm,

her claws retracted, and nose to chest.

To think a killer could be kind

and want to cuddle close to a heart;

to think of all we leave behind

as Life plies its slapdash-patterned art.

The patches jigsawed together,

a creature of chaos and of laws;

temperamental as weather

and yet smoothly playing on her paws.

Leaping!  Sleeping!  Wild as a child

forgone to the needs of ringing clocks,

bound to a moment, reconciled

with its self-apparent paradox.

And so I dreamt of her patterns,

a feline form from out of my past

who, just so, leapt and slept at turns

like childhood joys that pass by too fast.

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