For thirty-eight years I’ve listened for your cry
at my window, worried whether you were lost in the train yard,
or horrifically crushed by some speeding car, or trapped
in some crazy cat lady’s overabundant kitchen.
By falling back asleep, I failed at the final thing you asked from me.
Let me come home,
you mewed through the glass, Let me inside.
By all things sacred and holy to felines, I swear
that I meant to.
I put food on the patio for weeks.
It went untouched.
I got up every night to double check.
You were never there.
Months afterwards when
my marriage was over and the moving van was nearly full,
I paced the circumference of the yard calling your name
then stood holding the door
open to all my regrets.