Black cat, all cloak and fangs, cascading down
the long shadows of the stone garden wall.
The shed door, opening on the mower
in its green-gold plastic armour plating
sallying forth, waging war on the lawn,
slicing legions of grass blades in half.
The black cat, that pantomime villain, skulks
in the wings as a swing-seat slowly arcs
under a fat man vacantly chewing
a cold and congealing roast chicken leg.
The sun's doing nothing: has no intention
of slowly sinking. On the other side
of the fence, two pink old ladies defend
themselves within a golden parasol,
enough meat charring on the barbecue
to feed a third-world village, they sit in
a mess, nest of newspapers, stupefied
on red wine. The power of the black cat,
its grip on the sun, the orange ball that
burns and flares, fur and claws and paws starting
to smoulder, clinging on until the sun
gives up, dies in the long spikes of its grip.