Poetry Madness
 
 

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Fup. Store Cat.

Chapter 58

In Loving Memory
Fup. Store Cat.
1988 — 2007

fup 18 fup 19
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Fup. Store Cat.
Fup watercolor courtesy of reader Linda McDougall. Click here for a larger view.
Bear
bear
Zooey
zooey

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Fup returned from the store cat convention energized by the passion of her colleagues but jet-lagged and worn out from long, heated debates that lasted late into each night.

She explained to Bear: "For every bookstore cat, approximately fifteen more cats are on the outside looking in. Too many cats, not enough bookstores. Seminar after seminar addressed identifying growth sectors in the store cat market."

"Retirement homes?" Bear guesses.

"Coffeeshops," Fup tells him. "In May, we'll vote whether or not to fund a coordinated push to situate five thousand cats nationwide over the next two years. If we don't take advantage now, supporters say, small dogs could capture valuable store-pet market share — just look at how they've monopolized t.v. sitcom roles. Cats have been practically nonexistent in prime time for years."

Bear gets glassy-eyed, remembering something.

He concedes, "You forget how easy it was to catch on with a store when we were young. The summer I was three I spent so much time sunning myself on Henderson's porch swing I became store cat by default. Just persistence was all it was."

"The shop in Ann Arbor?"

"Before that. My first gig, in Lansing."

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The Trip to Kahani

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Fup's Picks

That Cat That Changed My Life: 50 Cats Talk About How They Became Who They Are That Cat That Changed My Life: 50 Cats Talk About How They Became Who They Are
by Bruce Eric Kaplan

"All these cats lead exciting and varied lives wholly independent of the human race," notes the editor in his Introduction. Well, duh. Scant attention has been paid to the role of community in modern cat culture, so what a relief that here, finally, fifty articulate felines set the record straight. Funny, sad, occasionally shocking, but never less than true, these brave monologues reaffirm our interdependency in ways that choreographed public displays such as Paws Across America never can.

Unleashed: Poems by Writers' Dogs Unleashed: Poems by Writers' Dogs
by Amy Hempel

In "Dog Kibble," Tasha Baxter's verse exhibits a brutal economy of words: "Life is never meaningless," her villanelle announces, "there is always food." Here and throughout this collection these authors demand your attention, as if to bark, "You can send me to my room for yelling at the neighbors but you cannot silence what woofs in my heart!" Among the selections nominated for Best American Writing by Pets 2000 are Bob Barker Barry's sordid and hilarious hallucinogenic escapades with Lynda; a tragic, posthumous prose poem by Marrow Irving; and Sadie Louise Lamott's "Spoon River Sadie Louise," a wildly metered exploration of the cross-cultural dynamics within a household occupied by dogs, cats, birds, and small children. The sheer intellect of these collected pieces will renew your faith in dogs.

Is Your Cat Too Fat?Is Your Cat Too Fat?
by Bronwen Meredith

Too fat for what? And what business is it of this Meredith person's anyway? Bronwen sounds like the kind of lady I wouldn't like at all.

 

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