by Robert Feldman

two alleycats sprang from their overhanging courtyard perch,


the broken glass predawn midst,


the occasional moans from a half-open 4th floor window,

astonishing the quietude,

but not my tell-tale heart

busy pounding loudly enough to signal the dead


for it was that distinct odor

emanating from a wooden cellar door

across from where I crouched,

grey paint flakes

chips and gouges defining its age,

and its pathetic groans

when the wind disturbed its constant corpse-like existence

some alien set of lungs hungering to resuscitate-

this sentient entity

masquerading as a hopeful opening,

this portal phantasmagorical

red teary eyed,

serenely seeking out yet another victim to yank inward,

heartbeat and all,

disguising hidden floors below,

the creaking now gesturing to me,

another psudosentient creature to feed from

to embrace its greedy hunger,

to drink deeply its severity


regarding those blood eyes of the emasculated hunter,

my defenseless eyes

involuntarily shut,

debating its offer of immortality,

the door opening,

the door closing,

prisoner subtly hijacked

blown invisible by some historic breath

other jackknifed nights,

me, the sentient breathless,

my image apparent

now obvious to other predatory eyes

greedily cowering among the debris,


satiated by sanguinary centuries,

gorged with expectations,

my life irrelevant

its life relevant,

mere blood merging through this slight crack in the world,

comprised of man and phantom stalking each other

through wicked

skeletal grey doors

of polluted perception