Cats In Bathrooms
by Jannine Hadid

You twist the knob
And set the water to boil
And smile at your new mug, all set
With it’s teabag
And turn
A few steps here, two more
And you turn towards the inside
Of the door
Like a fugitive
Or child
And snap the lock behind your back
Turning out your parents’ dinner guests
And quickly raise the lid
And slide your skirt to your knees
And sink onto the seat
But then you gasp
As out of the corner comes a shadow
And a golden eye
And four paws, as well as a tail
And a body
That wind around you
And sniff the rolls of paper by your feet
Still packaged, a mere two missing
Yet that’s just enough
For a furry creature to inspect
And she dips her nose in first
Before recoiling and searching instead
With her padded feet
And meows
As if any insect will now scurry away in terror
And you shush her
And stroke her
Because, like the child or fugitive
You do not want the attention on yourself
Or her, as long as she’s here
But you do not push her out
Of this confined space
Due to a fear of opening the door
And your father’s business partner
Catching a glimpse
That he so craves and disgustingly pursues
Of you with no cover
On your lower parts
With your undergarments taught
Around your thighs
And your skirt at your knees
But she does not act in such a way that this action
Would be absolutely necessary
And instead she rubs against your legs
And she flops onto your skirt
Yanking it down to your ankles
Below your cowboy boots
And you do not push her off
Because she may cry out and meow
Even thou you know it’s shedding season
And her fur is black
While your skirt is white
And you sigh
And you pet her head as you do your business
And listen as your father and his partners do theirs.

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