LOCAL VIEW –Good-bye Old Cat–

It was meant to be a Manhattan cat, I think. Definitely not an ally cat, nor a country cat. Never got involved in nighttime squalling and brawling, preferring to observe from the porch, when it was warm enough to step outside. If there was any mist, or temperatures dipped below 70°F, it headed in. Therefore I knew there was a problem when I saw it laying on the lawn in a cold drizzle.

My wife brought it in and we laid it by the fire to warm, but it stirred only once to drink from a bowl of water I held up to its mouth, and then slept the Big Sleep.


Who asked you into my life to steal my heart?
Unwanted cat; unable to make the move
Into no-pet housing, when old owner made new start;
Grossly overfed; never outdoors; in a groove
Of fat habits; unaffectionate;
Looking like a bowling ball with short legs;
Doomed to be destroyed, but then my dim wit
Thought, “My barn could use a cat”. Such wit begs
jeered laughter. You couldn’t outrun a mouse
And you didn’t like barns, and daily would waddle
To mew piteously outside my house.
“Don’t let that cat in! Be tough! Don’t coddle!”
But you worked your way in, grew old, died fat,
And in spite of myself, I miss you, old cat.

16 thoughts on “LOCAL VIEW –Good-bye Old Cat–

  1. Cats show up at our house all the time. People drive out from town and toss their kittens into the ditch. We find them there with their eyes crusted over. Other times, they let loose the pets that they no longer desire to care for. The ones that survive find their way to our back porch, begging for a hand-out which we provide in bulk. It keeps the mice down.

    Recently, a calico cat showed up. We call her Twiggy because she is so thin.

    Next two tuxedo cats took up residence under the stair. Last Tuesday, my wife noted that there was a third tuxedo but I had to tell her that she was mistaken, the white strip ran from the critter’s nose, down its back to the tip of its tail.

    So I did what I always do with skunks. I captured it with a live trap and since the townies entrust us with their pets, I return the favor by entrusting them with our wildlife.

  2. A really touching tribute. He knew that he was well loved. My little scrag bag of a feral cat would be on my lap right now if I wasn’t using my laptop.

  3. Bummer to lose a good pet. When our dog died the vets assistant commented on the unconditional love from pets and it certainly was true of our little guy.

    • “Unconditional Love” may be too much, but pets sure do know and accept us more than many mortals. One president (LBJ?) said something along the lines of, “My dog is the only one I fully trust.”

  4. No cats, but three dogs. All brought to Chicago from the Wisconsin dairy farm as puppies. One put down due to senilty when blind and incontinent at age 15. The other two both died of cancer, one after having had a hind limb amputated. Life is wonderful, but hard. Dogs and cats teach that to humans who live longer, but not forever.
    Highest regards and condolences.

  5. My mother had a faithful companion for 20 years who arrived with a naturally set broken leg, probably from an encounter with a car using his nine lives in one go He gradually became a house cat. We all missed him when he finally passed away and still reminisce about him at family get togethers.
    Our own Cat is on borrowed time so we’re enjoying the company while it lasts. He too has never caught a mouse, but lets you know when he’s hungry. He’s the latest of a long line. After our boys left home he spent many months waiting on the landing for them to come from wherever they’d been. When they still lived with us arrival home in the early hours was met with a severe telling off from a very patient cat.
    Whether one of the local farm cats who check us out from time to time manages to break our resolve not to have another pet remains to be seen. Cats have a way of working their way into your affections and news of a vacancy spreads quickly amongst the local feline population in my experience.

    • Cats have an uncanny ability to do what they prefer, against all odds. Maybe that is what makes us like them. A cat could care less about being “politically correct”. If they want to be a Manhattan cat on a New Hampshire farm, that is what they will be, and anyone who attempts to get in their way will get a look that speaks volumes.


      Volume 1? Volume 2? Volume 3?

      The person who writes the book about the look in a cat’s eyes will make big bucks.

  6. My 14 yo cat is laying on my chest as I read this down in Chile. He likes to look at your ice plots on my iPad when I scroll through them. He didn’t comment as I was looking at your nice poem and picture of your kitty but he did make a little sound. They are all unique and alike at the same time. I read somewhere that cats do understand us but they don’t feel the need to let us know that they do understand us. Sorry for your loss. I’m sure he had some fun times in NH.

  7. I lost two beloved cats, Rusty and Tiger, Rusty in July and Tiger in September. They were both orange Tabbys. Rusty was old and on borrowed time, so his passing was expected, but Tiger was still young. Just this year he was strutting around with a bird in his mouth, so proud of himself for catching it. Then he developed a mass in his stomach and a month later he was gone.

    I do believe that cats are in tune with your emotions. When you are down they cheer you up by being playful and affectionate. I miss both of them very much.

    I know how sad it is to lose a beloved pet, but their memories live on forever.

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