12.18.2007

I Remember.

"It was an entirely special cat of

silver-grey, with eyes and ears outlined

in black, as if with kohl. The eyes,

staring up at her, were as green as -

green as -

'Her eyes,' said Perub, 'reminded

us of the lakes in the Oasis. Green

like them. We called her Ta-she,

land of lakes. Though of course you

may name her what you wish.'

The little cat, not quite a kitten but

almost, purred confidently in Irun's hands.

'Ta-she,' said Irun. 'Ta-she.' "


-The Cat in the Mirror by Mary Stoltz




I seem to recall she came to us in the spring. She wasn't a kitten, but certainly young. I remember Mom chasing her along the backside of the house with the blue broom, trying desparately to shoo her when she was already destined to be ours.


I remember trying to teach her to be assertive to the neighboring cats. I remember her romping with me into the woods. I remember being worried each time she was gone for a day or two.


I remember finding out about her and her kittens! She must've been such a good mother. I bet her kittens were gorgeous, just like her. I remember being so upset at finding out our neighbor gave you away, but all that was overshadowed by the joy I felt when you came back. I was so afraid you wouldn't remember me.


I always snuck you up into my room. I never cared how much trouble I got into . . . I just loved letting you in and giving you that warmth and luxury. Then you would mew at the front door and Mom would get even angrier. It was all worth it.


I'd give anything to hear that mew right now . . . or one of your chirps after hearing your name.

I remember your reaction to my hospital bracelet after I came home from the ER . . . we were both so scared.

I remember relying on you whenever I was upset . . . I would leave the house and lay with you no matter how cold it was on the porch.

I remember being sad to leave you behind when I went to college . . . and being so happy to see you each time I had occasion to return.

I remember your kiss spot.

I remember being worried about the move to Elverson, but you and Emmie adjusted just fine. I bought you both collars and ID to be safe . . . the very collar I wear around my wrist now.

I remember seeing you the summer I came home for treatment . . . you avoided me as if to express the difference.

And I remember our last few visits together. Always eager to see you, to pick you up and squeeze you, to lay with you in the grass, enjoying your company.

I DIDN'T KNOW IT WOULD BE FOR THE LAST TIME.

I always wanted to take you in, baby. To let your last years be comfortable and carefree. To come full circle with you, to show you I would always be there and was always there in heart and spirit.

BUT IT DIDN'T QUITE WORK OUT THAT WAY. YOU LEFT SO SUDDENLY.

I THOUGHT YOU WERE OKAY; THAT YOU WEREN'T SLOWING DOWN.

Maybe I was wrong, sweetie. I had to go by the opinions of those who lived with you.

I JUST WANTED YOU TO BE AS HAPPY AS POSSIBLE.

I HOPE YOU WERE, BABY. I HOPE YOU WERE.

I remember Mom & Ed putting you in the car.

I remember crying all the way home.

I remember seeing your box mixed in with my presents.

I remember being a customer rather than a worker.

I

R

E

M

E

M

B

E

R

B

R

E

A

K

I

N

G

D

O

W

N

.

My last stroke.

Your last kiss.

And I'll cling to you until you return.

I remember.

2 comments:

artful_wench said...

I don't often read a near stranger's journal because, honestly, I don't care what other people are doing. However, you left me a comment on my work and I felt that I should look over your writing and see for myself what we have in common.

All I can say is, wow. I was bawling my eyes out by the end of this particular entry. You hit a soft spot. I know exactly how you feel.

Ah, and I love a good dose of empathy. Thank you.

I'm totally addicted to you now. I can't wait to read through your archives and I shall wait with baited breath for you to post an update.

Thank you for finding me. You reminded me that the Internet is completely worth the hassle.

Danielle said...

Her death was quite sudden, and she was a big part of my childhood and my life. The "until you return" was in reference to her ashes. I work at an animal shelter and we can privately cremate au gratis, so I took advantage of the service. She is back at home with me now, in her little box. I'm not sure I'm done mourning, but I don't break in tears near as often anymore.

BTW, you're lucky I noticed your message in my LJ inbox. I don't know much about LJ cause I just have it to comment without anonymity. But I found it. Let us continue to chats. (^_^)