Widow Caldwell’s Lamentation on the Death of Her Cat

It hurts to rise; the house is cold.  The day,
the week, the month have been as cruel as ice
that cracks the sill to let new drafts betray
my age. Arthritic wind feels like a knife.
And yet I rise.  The howl of misery
compels the aching shuffle of my feet
to throb across the room in agony.
What screeches like my joints out in the street?
I know before I hurt myself to rise,
and die in cold denial for my sake,
what scene the frosted window now denies;
I feel my ancient heart begin to break.
It hurts to drop in sorrow to the floor
as softly comes the knock upon my door.

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