Cradling him, small, in my lap, belly up
rubbing the loose skin up and down until he begins
to pant and wriggle
until his thin pink straw slides out, turns red
with my motion
his shudders pushing into my thigh
and his liquid splattering
up his belly fur and onto my jeans.
Rolling him off, horror-hopping to my bike
pumping furiously away
refusing the dollar Denise had promised
for going over to feed her beagle.
Elliott batTzedek has been living a life of poetry since she was 8 and saw bald eagles nesting the first year after they’d been near extinction. In her current poetry life she is the events coordinator for Big Blue Marble Bookstore in Philadelphia, co-founder of QuillsEdge Press: Indispensable Poetry by Women Over 50, and founder of Poetry Business Manager. Between 8 and now she acquired an MFA in Poetry and Poetry in Translation from Drew University; her translation manuscript of Dance of the Lunatic by the Israeli Jewish lesbian writer Shez won the 2012 Robert Bly Translation prize, judged by Martha Collins. Her work appears or is forthcoming in the journals: Wicked Banshee, American Poetry Review, Massachusetts Review, Menacing Hedge, Armchair/Shotgun, Naugatuck River Review, and Sinister Wisdom, and in the anthologies: Passageways: the 2012 Two Lines Translation Anthology, and Women Write Resistance: Poets Resist Gender Violence.