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This poem is taken from PN Review 27, Volume 9 Number 1, September - October 1982.

Three Poems Rachel Hadas

CAT CARRIER

A single answer to the many questions
suggests itself behind shut eyes in green,

between parentheses or at my tonguetip,
the word, the word. Yin yang: the carriered cats

(their twin heat-pantings and their goldslit eyes)
are journeying according to their natures.

The big one sleeps or meditates, turns cushion
for the small thrasher who frays her claw-ends, pokes

her nose through portholes till it's skinned and bleeding,
and cries each fifty miles: is there no world

beyond this blue-grey plastic palanquin
we're caged and roasting in? How can I be

shut in here and be me? The other sighs
and proffers her broad back and shuts her eyes.

OCTOBER II
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