Beliefnet
Beginner's Heart

Sophie the cat came to us about 10+ years ago. So she’s an elder cat — well-versed in the wiles of felines. She knows that when I’m sitting at the breakfast table, and the mid-day sun is slanting over the table, I won’t object to her laying on the table beside me. After all, the sun is warm on both of us, and a grey cat is greyt inspiration…:)

I sometimes wonder if it’s attachment to be so fond of the family animals. There are animals in my life — far far back — for whom I still grieve. A dog; a cat that didn’t even belong to me; another dog that didn’t, either… Their names and faces are fresh, like a beloved aunt’s.

Sophie isn’t a ‘life cat.’ She isn’t as amazing as the cat who lived w/ us courtesy of friends. Grabber seemed to know my every thought. And while she’s certainly as beautiful as (if not more than) any cat I’ve had, she’s pretty well-adjusted, as cats go. She doesn’t have any real idiosyncracies. Perhaps that’s enough to make her idiosyncratic…?

Because cats always come w/ baggage. Sophie is a rescue, a feral kitten born at the site of my son’s camp counseling job. He brought her home 10+ years ago, and she’s been with us since. Several years back, the neighbour behind us shot her; the pellet from what should have felled a racoon instead remains lodged in her flank. The vet told us it’s too dicey w/ cats to operate, since it doesn’t seem to do more than make her gimpy. She can still take a hummingbird down from mid-air, even at 10. Still, she is simply herself — a grey cat, sleeping in January sun.

Something there is, as Auden would say, about sitting in the lazy sun w/ a dozing cat. But I don’t think it’s attachment. It feels more like this moment, expanding outward like a warm golden field. Kind  of like a black hole in reverse…? At any rate — I wish I could send it to each of you. Because I’m pretty sure we need more of it this coming year ~

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