Cat boy cat

Watching you fighting
I am amazed at
your tenacious grip,
and that slippery twist
of hip, and shoulder,
that keeps you standing.
Even when you fall
you seem to come down
on your feet.

Hard to believe
this is the same you
that sprawls soft on the sofa,
all liquid limbs;
that spends hours
watching something shiny,
chasing some fleck of light.

And, yes, you are affectionate,
curling warm beside me,
but I know that left alone
you’d survive, somehow,
and that sometimes
the forest calls you.

 

This is for Kim at dVerse, who is asking us to write about a person as if they are an animal, or an animal as if they are a person. I’m not entirely sure which way round I’ve done it! I feel I should clarify that my son does judo, so it’s not just random fighting we’re talking about. It’s a funny sport. You watch kids turning on their fight head, and then sitting chatting with the kid they’ve just been battling with a few minutes later.

NaPoWriMo 20 – the sporty one

Gannets

Simon says “Rei” and they all bow –
that breaks the silence, and the line,
and suddenly the dojo’s full of movement –
kids circling, looking for their zoris,
gis flapping white. Most are flocking
to their mums, but over there
two boys are grappling, practising
ran dori, and I hear talk of uchi mata, uchi komi.
One girl is cartwheeling across the tatame,
Revelling in her arms’ strength,
swinging a circle, and then landing,
bringing her feet down solid on the mat.

Out west, gannets are circling,
wings flashing white, weaving
above the waves. They swoop and dart,
Make sudden plunges – knives
through the water. I hear them calling,
and I think they must be joyful,
revelling in their wings, testing their strength
against the water and the wind.

NaPoWriMo asks us for a poem that uses sporting terms. My son is a judoka, so this is for him.