He went by the name of Tabasco Joe,
Loyal sofa-mounted malkin of Pete,
Yet reigned loyalty reeks so bitter-sweet.
His scarlet coat like raspberries in the snow.
His little lungs tussock'd with tobacco,
For Pete loved to suck on the devil's teat,
Chain-smoking like the cigar-club elite,
Tabasco Joe's chest tarred like a fresh road.
A passive-smoking pussycat was condemned,
Chugging along like an old steam engine,
Simply for serving as a loyal friend!
Pete's regular roll-ups were killing him,
The blackened lungs that the vet cannot mend.
Tabasco Joe: the loyal grimalkin.
From Weyfarers No 100 (June 2006)