Stirring : A Literary Collection

Ani Gjika


He must have been nine years old
when he dipped a cat in gasoline,
set it on fire and watched it run a round of horror.

The mad cat dance, he called it, come watch
the mad cat dance, he said to his friends
but they ran away from the terrible joy in his eyes

leaving him there alone to watch the cat spin
and hear it cry from its stomach. He buried it afterwards
crying aloud to himself all through the digging.

Later that year, he threw a cat off the tenth floor
just to see if it'd die. He was told cats have nine lives
or nine souls or something like that.

One day we heard his father beat his mother.
He cut her hair so short that she didn't get out
of the house for two whole months.

He burnt the hair in front of her
and when she'd start to cry, he'd yell at her,
"Shut up, shut up you skinny cat, it'll grow back."

Date of Birth: 1978
Location: Boston, Massachusetts
Publications: The Melic Review, 3rd Muse Poetry Journal, Writer's Hood, Naked Poetry, Noochbomb

Stirring : A Literary Collection

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