Howard Firkin
(the astrophysicist’s cat)
I wear a sympathy with night: I’m black.
I’m soft, sure-footed, certain. I appear.
I seep into the house when you’re not here
and when you are. I’m never gone. I’m back.
Like all my kind I know what matters: dark;
it holds the universe together and
apart. It makes the space I occupy,
catspace, between the garden and the sky,
the space you study and can’t understand.
Before your big bang came my single spark.

The astrophysicist concerns himself
with his cosmology—and I with mine.
There’s room for both: his books upon the shelf;
my stars, like cats’ eyes in the night, feline.