Stray Cat

Stray Cat,

Where do you wander? Where do you prowl?

When everyone is against you

You look back at me with those eyes that have seen the world.

How do you survive?

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She dances like an ocean swell

Her feet cry red tears of passion and pain. Her muscles tremble in agony. Her back arches, her fingers drift through the air. A slender neck, proudly displaying her focused features. Long hair, primly observing from a loosening knot on her head.

It makes her feet bleed, but still she does not stop. She slips her bandaged foot back into the shoe and ties it tightly. She tests herself lightly. A small hop. It hurts, but she barely winces. Already her eyes are drawn to the bar, to the open floor, and her ears are listening for the beat. The rhythm of waves against strong cliff walls.

She stretches lightly again. Tendu. Petit battement. Grand battement.

Then she is flowing across the floor like an ocean swell. Her legs reach forward, her hair foams. Momentarily she descends, only to push off again, higher than before. She grows as her arms extend. At last she crashes onto the beach. Her feet hiss across the sand.

Then she retreats, and all that is left is a damp imprint of her momentary presence. A small displacement of sand.

Already she has returned to the sea. And she once again begins her journey to the shore.

I don’t regret my choice, but sometimes I do miss ballet. Or just dancing in general.

A Challenge Worthy of a Fool

I can feel the burn of their taunting eyes. The slow drag of tongues over lips betrays their anticipation as I swallow. My smile emerges as a grimace. Strange. I was pretty sure that I was grinning just a moment ago as I put the chopsticks to my mouth. Odd. Everything is a little bit blurry, but I can’t figure out why. My recollection of the events leading up to this seems to be as fuzzy as my vision. What had I done?  Ah yes, a few minutes ago I had boasted that I could conquer any food. What a fool I was to take this food. And to eat it, that vegetable gleaming so innocently red.

My gasp only drags the agony downwards. Yes, now I know why my lips refuse to turn upwards, and why my eyes are drowning.

My cutlery clatters as my hand claps over my mouth. It burns.  Little imps with thorny feet are summoning a demon on my tongue.

I should have known better, but I really am too easily fooled. It was sweet at first, caressing my tongue with its smooth outside, sliding reassuringly past my lips. Encouraged, I bit down. Fire exploded, sending molten sensations throughout my mouth. Like an angry firebird it spread its wings, consuming all until only flames were left, encasing my tongue in its wretched dance. It screeches whenever I breathe and caws its horrible laughter when I attempt to soothe its fiery wrath.

Water falls, abandoning me along with my ego, along with my trust.

My other hand flounders, searching desperately as my mind screams obscenities. I must have looked comical, with a face as red as the source of my agony. So powerful it was to have taken over my body so quickly, so easily. Sweat trickles down my neck, and I can only dream of the soothing embrace of the Northern winds.

I can hear their laughter, as agonizing as the little imps sashaying across my tongue. Into a jester they had made me. What I thought was bravery was naught but foolishness.

Salty droplets flee for the safety of my shirt. Proof of my failed conquest. My hand lights upon a small white package, and I grin again. Or was it grimace? I manage to wrestle my other hand away long enough to open it and pour the content into my mouth in sweet, sweet relief.

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This is a piece that I wrote a while ago, and then finally decided to edit and post. Based off of the prompt of writing about one of the five senses.