by Mark A. Johnson

I remember when
you used my records as a scratching post.
Jimi Hendrix had gashes across his face
and holes in his guitar.
And you woke me at three that morning
to tell me you were cold,
and I let you under the covers, forgiven.

I threw away that gym bag
you had mistaken for your box.
I could never get the smell out.
And yet I shared my steak with you,
you always asked so nicely.

You’ve managed to outlive three couches
I wonder if I should buy another?
It’s getting cold at night,
I think I should keep you indoors
and set out the heating pad for you.