Monday, May 2, 2011
A Tale of Two Cats
So at first there was Sylvester, a gray and white cat, not young, who had belonged to first one house, and then another, and when folks moved, Sylvester stayed. He became a friend to most of the neighborhood. Then we came and he let us join him and we learned to love him dearly. Months went by and we noted a cream-colored cat hanging around. We named him Cream and then found out he was Charlie, a feral cat who also happened to be a friend of Sylvester's. We started putting out lots of extra food and were fascinated to watch the sharing ceremonies the cats went through where Sylvester always ate first, then moved away and Charlie Cream would then eat, too. We entertained a fantasy of 'taming' Charlie so that he would feel safe and cared for; we hated the thought of his suffering in extreme weather. But our plans were not to be. One day there was no Charlie at meal time and we never saw him again. Then, even worse, one day there was no Sylvester. We thought his absence was merely a bit of roaming on a mild fall night, but we never saw Sylvester again. We searched and searched. We lashed ourselves thinking about what we might have done to prevent the losses, which of course did no good at all. We were privileged to know both cats, and to be taught lessons of sharing and companionship that many humans have not yet learned. They will be remembered.