Poems of the Week

Mittens the Malefactor

by Patrick Biggs

“Mittens, the Cat of Wellington, is a Turkish Angora famous for his wanderings around New Zealand’s capital. He is known to visit shops, churches, universities, restaurants, bars, hotels, and people’s homes. His adventures are documented by his thousands of fans on social media. Recently, he was detained by Wellington police after being spotted dangerously crossing the road by the city’s library. He was later released without charge.”
—NZ Herald

New Zealand’s justice system, it disheartens me to say,
Absolves too many criminals, permitting crime to pay.
Though trivial delinquents should of course be spared the joint,
Regrettably a recent matter illustrates my point.

They’d Mittens in their clutches and they let the felon out,
Despite the bleak skulduggery we know that cat’s about.
They merely took his details down: aged nine, of Turkish ilk,
Exhibiting a ginger coat as velvety as silk.

They’d Mittens in their custody and let him out the door.
He only jaywalked? Au contraire, his crimes are manyscore.
He’s plundered every shop in town, he’s broken into homes—
No place is safe from trespass for as long as Mittens roams.

They’d Mittens in detention and unwisely let him go.
You might have seen him at the church but, trust me, it’s for show.
More often he’s frequenting bars and running from the bill.
A mouse I spoke to hinted that his deeds are darker still.