He jumps up on the top of the couch to feel the sun at mid-afternoon. He enjoys the warmth until a bird settles on the neighbor’s roof. Gawking sounds emit but to no avail. That cute bird is not about to be his.
His cleaning now begins as though his cleaning twenty minutes ago wasn’t sufficient. Cat cleaning takes quite a while. Every claw needs special attention. (It only takes me three minutes, and I have water!)
His waging tail leisurely tucks itself inside his hind legs and his front paw becomes a pillow for a slowly falling, weary head. (He just finished a nap one hour ago.) His eyes are wide open but you’re able to see its glassiness as though, as though…; there the head goes down, resting itself on the newly named pillow followed by a long sigh that would mean to us that someone died.
If bliss is not the word then I have no idea to better describe a cat’s sleep. Is he dreaming about lost mice and missed birds? Is he hoping that I find a job to continue feeding him? Does he ponder those large, deposited stools that I need to scoop out each night? A deep sleep envelopes him with a heavy breathing that gently relaxes. Any mother would envy a cat’s sleep with her three children in the next room, wondering about their future’s future.
A quick tick is heard and his eyes open widely before I hear the stupid, silly tick. Alert. Ready. Armed. He looks around and waits for another ticking sound. Doesn’t happen. The head and eyes both begin to lower themselves in harmony. (I should be so lucky with my 1:00 a.m. cigarette after going to bed at 11:00 p.m.) His head reclines with again those dreams “Of Mice and Birds?”
He’ll respite there until the need for affection awakens him. He’ll jump up on me and extend those cleaned claws into my shoulders and stare me in my face and I wonder what he’s thinking or is he thinking at all.
He warmly looks at me but he can’t smile because he’s a cat. But I can.
Books by Fr. Joe Jagodensky, SDS.
Available at Amazon.com:
“Living Faith’s Mysteries”
“Spiritual Wonderings and Wanderings”