If I could, I would live without him entirely. He sits black and sleek, only the sharp tip of his tail twitching. He watches me, his clever almond yellow eyes lit from within like a jack-o-lantern, like the sun. His coat is dappled by lamp-light, and by the blue night-glow of empty rooms. I have made attempts to command him and to domesticate his wild, animal stillness – that is what we humans do, after all: we vanquish him – but the power has made him seem just that much more enticing and elusive. With his claws retracted, he is as soft as a velvet blanket pulled up to my chin, but his weight unsettles me. Only a thin sheet of glass separates us.
© Jessica Minier Mabe