I have developed a crush
on my veterinarian,

the most useful romance
I will never have. Still,

I learn her language:
I speak inflammatory

bowel disease, chronic
pancreatitis, allergic

sensitivity, idiopathic
origins, unpredictable

progressions. This one
will end where it starts,

will leave me doting
on the old cat purring

in my lap as I compend
descriptors for human love:

analgesic, tachycardic,
somatic, neuroleptic;

 iatrogenic, degenerative;
choleretic, metastatic.

Invariably terminal;
occasionally, fatal.



  1. Love how it all comes back to cat-in-lap pausing. Whatever is to come, not just yet. And your vibes with the vet make me envious! Intriguing closing – cats and humans, we all go; and I believe like cats, we humans come back for subsequent lives. Not sure about the number nine.

    An aside – Intriguing to read this now, only hours after almost writing a poem about my “old” vet – very young when I moved to Austin in 1986 and became ally for my 2 cats from Florida. Over the years I turned into neighborhood cat lady taking in strays, creating a fence-in for my entire back yard to protect my clan from mischievous neighbor kids, dogs, whatever. Population well served by Dr. May – he said more than once I was putting his daughter through college. Alas, I retired, income dropped, I had to cease taking in feline companions. A few months post 2002 retirement I took in the last – now my husband, a Leo, and I joke that he was my last rescue. In truth, he rescued me. We live in the once “cat haven”. Dr. May retired about 2 years ago, moved away. I cannot seem to bond to his replacement, although he mentored her quite a while. She throws out the big words first, whereas he always explained in plain English and then offered the technical term. Oh how I wish he could’ve stayed young and here long beyond my being here.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I can relate, Jazz! My all-time favorite vet — a down-to-earth old-schooler from Oklahoma who knew her stuff, had great integrity and who understood and respected that I like to work closely with my vet — retired recently. Her last gift to my cat family was to come to my home last Feb. 7 — hard to believe it’s been a year! — to help Puff’s brother Spot over the threshold. Still miss him madly, and I miss her, too. Both irreplaceable.

      Liked by 2 people

  2. Your enjambment between “inflammatory” and “bowel” is nothing short of majestic! I’m glad I didn’t miss this sweet study of word- (and veterinarian- and feline-) love…

    Liked by 3 people

    1. If you’re going to like it that much, I’m going to pretend that enjambment was done with great intention. Otherwise, I’ll have to confess it was unconscious, like all of whatever brilliance I manage. 🙂 Thank you, Steph!

      Liked by 2 people

  3. This is a fantastic poem.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Why, thank you! You’ve made my day with your appreciation!

      Liked by 2 people

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