Friday, December 10, 2010

mehitabel dances with the ghost of emily dickinson

fig. 1 emily dickinson
Emily Dickinson (b. December 10, 1830, d. May 15, 1886), as overwrought and light weight as gold leaf, perhaps the lightest of America's precieux, was born of station and property in Amherst, Massachusetts where these days she has her very own national museum.

mehitabel dances with the ghost of emily dickinson
h. friley hall

you will not believe it
yesterday mehitabel s eyes got big
and yellow and her back arched
she yowled and danced sideways and i
asked in some wonderment what had
got into the old girl

today she was much calmer and replied
that she had seen the spook of emily dickinson
in the wee early milkwagon dawn

what quoth i was ms dickinson doing out
in broad daylight i thought she was a
good presbyterian or at least episcopalian
ghost from amherst mass but mehitabel
rejoined she did give me a turn
being the good catholic cat that i am
but there was nothing untoward in her
demeanor indeed she was very ladylike
and attempted to scratch my ears
somewhat unsuccessfully i might add
her being a shade and all

boss mehitabel could not come to a point
if she were a darning needle but
eventually she claimed that emily
dickinson s birthday began at midnight
last night and so she was out kicking
up her heels and a few odd buckets
laughing like a loon she was 180 years
old mehitabel said and
the two of them went dancing down
the morning streets yelling toujour gai
and looking for sailors
but you know boss
as well as I
that mehitabel doesn t see so well
since she drank the sterno


          — with a nod to don marquis (1878-1937), thanks

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