A Cat Experiences a Thunderstorm, but Not for the First Time

We were cuddled up in bed together
just moments before I turned out the bedside lamp.

When lightning lit the room again shortly after,
you had already disappeared from my side;
I hadn’t felt your departure,
could not feel your absence.

As the heavy roll of thunder follows,
I wonder if you recognize it for what it is.
You are an animal, after all,
so if your intuition—
your affinity with the spirit of the universe,
less clouded than my own by the veil of self-awareness—
does not tell you what this is,

then surely there must be a way, some string of proteins,
that genetics can endow you with vestigial knowledge of the storm.

Your predecessors endured so many,
before and since domestication.

But maybe you don’t know.
Perhaps your unthinking curiosity
compels you to try to understand,
in whatever capacity you can:

what possible phenomenon could shake the sky
and the windows in their frames,
to interrupt the gentle beating of the raindrops
against the wet surfaces
mere feet from where we sleep.

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