Do we whistle in
the dark? Is song the conso-
lation of thinking?

When I put our cat
down, and light left his eyes, I
filled with the nothing.

To this day I do
just thinking of that moment,
that cat, that light in

his eyes, in my eyes.
It’s like the first whistle be-
fore the sun comes up,

before the silence
of the day. Song begins then,
there, before you think.

Author: Tom D'Evelyn

Tom D'Evelyn is a private editor and writing tutor in Cranston RI and, thanks to the web, across the US and in the UK. He can be reached at tom.develyn@comcast.net. D'Evelyn has a PhD in Comparative Literature from UC Berkeley. Before retiring he held positions at The Christian Science Monitor, Harvard University Press, Boston University and Brown University. He ran a literary agency for ten years, publishing books by Leonard Nathan and Arthur Quinn, among others. Before moving to Portland OR he was managing editor at Single Island Press, Portsmouth NH. He blogs at http://tdevelyn.com and other sites.

3 thoughts on “Whistle”

    1. Thank you so much, John. I’m glad you found so much in it. It certainly is about my cat Horace. Toby made him a staple in her newspaper column, Cat Horace. When Toby lost her mobility to sciatica, Horace was there for her. Toby’s wail of grief when I returned from the Vet was devastating. My point is that the loss makes sense only because of the extraordinary good the cat represented in our lives. This dialectic if the origin undermines nihilism and despair.


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