Paul Hostovsky

You look like someone just squished your kitten
on purpose. Come sit down, what’s wrong
with the world has always been wrong—it’s you
who are changed now. The world is the same
as yesterday when it retired to a quiet corner
of its cage with your kitten, in love and immensely
shy, sighing low as it lipped a reticulate leaf and
gazed with a rapt and dumb tenderness. But now
you gaze off into space in sorrow and despair
at something no longer there, because something
that was always there—and will always be there—
is picking its teeth with the same leaf in a different
corner now. You used to say there is no evil, only
lack of love. You will say it’s just semantics now
that nothing anyone can say means anything at all.