Kendra%27s+Cat

Belonging

Belonging–

a simple word to 

describe a complex,

wavering feeling,

a word that we crave to pin

to our hearts

because we yearn to feel 

safe…  warm… 

to be caressed by menageries 

of silken comforts,  

of benevolent words.

 

When did I experience that?

 

Humans–

fickle creatures that bathe 

in the praise of ones they’ve deemed

more significant… 

more important than another.

oh, how they scramble 

for miniscule words

to devour in their 

rapturous ecstasy,

to affirm it as their own and

procure their own sense of worth.

 

When did I start to crave praise?

 

Life–

my heart thrums 

against my chest,

blood coursing through

veins and arteries interlaced 

and webbed beneath my 

pale flesh and hollowed eyes… 

they are frightened of me,

they hate me. 

my ancestral gifts soon

become curses.

 

When did my flesh become a prison?

 

Home–

a sanctuary for most 

a penitentiary for others.

belonging should be natural here

but what is natural?

I should feel at peace

with who I am, 

who I’m meant to be

but I’m trapped… 

imprisoned,

within four walls.

 

When did I realize I was trapped?

 

Cats–

God’s gracious gift

to our forsaken earth.

soft fur and vibrant eyes

pierce through the

hazy fog of my despondence,

my mind clears… 

heart lightens.

this is natural.

this is peace.

 

This is peace.

 

Belonging–

a simple word to 

describe a complex

wavering feeling,

but within the tender embrace

of a rumbling cat,

I find warmth,

my sense of peace… 

but most importantly– 

a true sense of

Belonging.

Kendra Ristola, English Major ’22

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