21 July 2022

Vedma Had a Little Cat

Her name got lost, absconded, at some unrecorded time--ever since it
offended the Rhyming Dictionary by
rejecting for no reason, each, every, and all perfectly suitable and appropriate professionally proffered partners in rhyme.
So Vedma we shall call her--witch--a generic but it must do
to tell the tale of Rasputin, her little Russian blue,
the cat she thought she had
though Rasputin knew as all “owned” cats do, “O, you poor deluded one. I, of course, have you.”

Now, Vedma loved tomatoes as much as anyone else in Siberia;
she craved them with a passion that bordered on deliria.
They gazed out at the snow from their pots on the window sill
and treated her to blushing treats because they loved her exciting insides, never wishing her the least of ill.
Rasputin, on the other hand,
hated her distraction, her straying from waiting for his every little twitch of tail or whisker--
her unprofessional lack of attention to He, the A-plus lister;
her hunting and exterminating every tomato enemy though single or in a roving band.
So one night he swiped left and right, and shattered every pot of them.
The cold outdoors was monstrous, but inside was hell-warm and dry, a setting made by Velma’s spell.
(She also took her tea with dried raspberries, who, of course, would never tell.)
So when morning broke, and Vedma woke,
the tomatoes were almost dead,
a fate most undeserved considering the life they'd led.
Their roots, exposed, gone stiff and dry as the twigs in her graduation broom.
Their fruits wept but they couldn't die because of all the love she'd given them in that haven of a hellroom.
Love kept them alive just long enough for her to dive into
her jars of potions.
She dumped and washed and scraped and dug and scooped
and coddled and mumbled and wondered and asked,
but they acted as if they hadn’t notions not to mention
of the identity of the dastard.
They knew. 
Of course they knew, 
but tomatoes don't cast aspersions, 
so they didn’t tell. 

Instead they cast a spell.