Randall Jarrell

“The cat's asleep; I whisper "kitten"Till he stirs a little and begins to purr--He doesn't wake. Today out on the limb(The limb he thinks he can't climb down from)He mewed until I heard him in the house.I climbed up to get him down: he mewed.What he says and what he sees are limited.My own response is even more constricted.I think, "It's lucky; what you have is too."What do you have except--well, me?I joke about it but it's not a joke;The house and I are all he remembers.Next month how will he guess that it is winterAnd not just entropy, the universePlunging at last into its cold decline?I cannot think of him without a pang.Poor rumpled thing, why don't you seeThat you have no more, really, than a man?Men aren't happy; why are you?”
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