Author Topic: Vigilantes: or how we killed the cat lady  (Read 221 times)

Offline indar

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Vigilantes: or how we killed the cat lady
« on: March 01, 2021, 06:21:05 PM »
Vigilantes:
or how we killed the cat lady

The tall fence got our attention.
Vines climbed themselves many times,
twisted boards where we spied inside.
Cats in every window stretched, napped,
chased flies against the glass.

We speculated purposes
of wheels, spindles in overgrown grass. 

Then we saw her.

Everything she wore, stockings, headscarf, dress
was thick and black.
She poked a stick into the mess
beside her house, her back so bent
her head stuck straight out.

We looked at one another,
clamped our mouths behind our hands
to keep from laughing.
Tricia had to laugh so bad
she fell on the cement sidewalk.

Diane's mom said that was a cat lady
we had seen, they only leave their yards at night
to steal children who stay out after dark.
Then we remembered kids we had known:
the Sheehey twins from Pierce Street
and Robbie Brown
who used to ride his wagon down
the hill from Lowrey.

They had disappeared
and now we knew where they had gone.

We filled a plate with mud-crust
and the red-orange berries
moms said would kill us if we ate them,
left it at cat lady's gate and ran--

never went back to see what we had done.

One day Rita's dad said the city would tear
that old place down,
the lady and her cats were gone.
I cried and cried and confessed our crime.
Mom said we did not kill her with our poison-berry pie.

But we tried.

Offline crch

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Re: Vigilantes: or how we killed the cat lady
« Reply #1 on: March 01, 2021, 06:58:44 PM »
YES!
It's wonderful

Offline Royal Thorn 78

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Re: Vigilantes: or how we killed the cat lady
« Reply #2 on: March 01, 2021, 08:38:19 PM »
A novel tucked into a poem -- Indar this is amazing writing.
You lay humanity open for the look-see, the good and the struggling.

There are what would otherwise be a few nits with respect to syntax & diction, but I think they add texture to the voice of the N.  Don't change a thing.

Cheers.

R

Offline indar

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Re: Vigilantes: or how we killed the cat lady
« Reply #3 on: March 02, 2021, 04:03:32 PM »
Thank you Roy,

There is a line on these forums between hoping for comments and hoping for free writing instructions.

On the other hand there are those times, when reading another's work, one wishes to critique but does not want to upset a touchy writer. I am not a touchy writer, feel free to expand on nits should you feel so moved--or not.

Thank you for the read and positive comments, always welcome :)

Offline Skald--of--jorvik

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Re: Vigilantes: or how we killed the cat lady
« Reply #4 on: March 06, 2021, 11:29:13 AM »
To be honest, I don't often read poetry but I really enjoyed the narrative of this. Your title in particular really captured my attention and I spent the whole poem hoping that the cats would all be ok. I also loved the last sentence and the way you formatted the poem, allowing the line 'but we tried' to float on its own and linger in the mind of the reader.  :)
The whole of life is just like watching a film. Only itís as though you always get in ten minutes after the big picture has started, and no-one will tell you the plot, so you have to work it out all yourself from the clues- Terry Pratchett

Offline indar

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Re: Vigilantes: or how we killed the cat lady
« Reply #5 on: March 07, 2021, 01:39:31 PM »
Hi Skald,

The fate of the cats will remain one of life's mysteries. Fortunately this is a poem so you can make up your own ending.

However the events are drawn from a long-ago memory and is a fine example of how discovering someone different in combination w parental input can lead to terrible consequences. Fortunately we were way too young to conceive a more effective plot.

Thank you for the read and positive comments.