Simon’s Point of View

James Valvis

I keep thinking of him.
Simon was my wife’s cat,
around long before me,
and mean as a snake.
He pissed on the couch
and stared at you with
diseased greenish eyes,
daring you to stop him.
He clawed everything
and fought with Tessie,
our other, nicer cat,
the two of them rolling
on the rug, a tornado
of fur, teeth, and nails.
My wife said her ex
used to smoke his weed
then grab Simon’s face
and blow the smoke out
until the cat got high.
I believe it was worse
and he abused the cat,
beat it and made it nasty.
But Simon loved my wife
and would sit next to her
as if guarding her from me,
or hoping she’d guard him,
like any man would blow
smoke in its face or leave
them for another woman.
Like I was as bad the ex.
When my wife conceived,
I told her he had to go.
No way we could have
that cat and a newborn
in the same apartment.
She finally agreed and
a friend took him away
and put Simon to sleep.
A mercy killing, really.
The only possible outcome.
No malice at all involved.
And yet I can see how
from Simon’s viewpoint
he was right about me.

About the Work

James Valvis

James Valvis is the author of How to Say Goodbye (Aortic Books, 2011). He has published hundreds of poems in places like Anderbo, Arts & Letters, New York Quarterly, Poetry East, Rattle, River Styx, and Verse Daily. His fiction is also widely published in places like Los Angeles Review, Night Train, Potomac Review, storySouth, and Washington Pastime. He lives in Issaquah, Washington.

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