The Covetous Cat
Because the common is remote
they walk along hand in hand.
On the path ahead of them
some bird-lover has scattered bread
and in the middle of it a plump cat crouches
chewing at the crusts.
Cats don’t really like bread, the man remarks
he only wants it because it’s someone else’s.
Like you, she thinks,
withdrawing her hand slightly.
first published in Chooosing to be a Swan (Bloodaxe, 1994), © Connie Bensley 1994, from Finding a Leg to Stand On (Bloodaxe, 2012), used by permission of the author and the publisher.