A Metaphor in the Merlot

My friend’s cat wakes her up at the ass crack of dawn each day to be let out. The cat is anxious and eager; one might even say impatient.


Because the cat wants to go outside and fuck the neighbor’s tom cat.

Meanwhile, my friend stumbles back to bed, alone, and stares at the ceiling. Sleep evades her because all she can hear is the screeching, seesaw sound of cat-fuck.

Later, she will tell me this over wine and I will want to spew what’s in my mouth, tiny flares of merlot arcing across her kitchen table.

See us there sitting across from each other, how we could fall apart in half a breath. But notice how poised we are, how familiar with this holding back, the refusal even of what’s most primitive. See how tightly we purse our lips. We are women who know—it’s worth saving that wine while we still have it. Yes, saving every last drop.

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