Fifty Pounds Of Murder In A Cat-Shaped Bag
Growing up, we shared a house with a tiny black-and-white cat who had two personalities. Indoors, she gave us the cold shoulder, but outside, especially in the woods, she was almost human.
In a good way.
You’d go walking along a trail, and Kitty would join you. For miles. No leash, no shock-collar, just love.
She’d join you, but here’s how:
Kitty would lag behind farther and farther until you lost track of her. Then suddenly, she’d explode into speed and pass you by. Once she was fifty feet ahead, she’d slow to a walk. You’d pass her, she’d nod as you passed, or not, then she’d fall behind again. The distance between you would grow: ten feet, thirty feet, lost around a bend, then BOOM! she’d rip open a sack of turbo inside herself and fly by. Over and over.
It was an odd way of saying “I love you,” but however your cat says it, take it, and be grateful.
Sometimes, when woods-walking with Kitty, I’d bring beef jerky. I didn’t always have jerky with me — we weren’t rich — but when I did, I’d sit on a rock or fallen tree and eat the beef.
Kitty would climb onto the rock or tree, onto my lap, onto my shoulders, eyeing the beef from all angles. Jerky made her gymnastical. I’d give her a chunk to stop her from climbing into my mouth, and we’d feast together on dried beast, neither of us saying a word.
Muted by the taste of death and yum,
the companionable silence of carnivores.
The common ground of cat and kid,
as old as dust and dinosaurs.
But don’t be fooled by Kitty’s sweetness. She not only sought the meat murdered by others, but was just as full of murder as anyone else.