‘Patchy’ was a cat of character that dominating my life as a child during WW2 in London – I daresay there are quite a few of his descendants in that area to this day
Patchy, a pugnacious cat,
liked to live rough when he could,
often came back tired and dirty,
unrepentant and uncowed.
Black and white flanks dull and narrow,
lived on wild rabbits from the Flats; *
day or night roamed nearby bomb sites
fearlessly fighting other cats.
Wore his scars with style and swagger
and his shredded ear with pride.
But in winter, when we called him,
he”d condescend to come inside
to stay with us, eat well and often,
sleek flanks filled out. Then in the spring
with glossy coat and eyes that gleamed
he”d leave us, and live wild again.
* The Flats – common pasture land
on the edge of Epping Forest, Essex. England.