Posts Tagged ‘Cats’

Aunt Ruth

April 14, 2017

On the threshold of visible, a paler sort of shadow in darker air, solid with a slight sheen – that was her under the seat of a chair, behind the pine cupboard in the middle of the room.

Two cats hunting for the first time in the screaming stench of mice, sending round eyes flashing to every surface, ears swiveling, whiskers angled in a fury. Their long bodies stretch up, their soft paws spring and land a silent thud, ever moving, the first time knowing real work.

Aunt Ruth was my grandmother’s aunt, the bulbous heavy turned legs of her table once more fill their own meaning.

Cat, in the tactile silence of night time. Petrified wooden balusters, bent laths, the chairs of my childhood night creepings, though no fear, now that my mission is my own and I am in the employ of my two hunting cats.

The seven ghost cats of 1929, murdered by drowning in Aunt Ruth’s boiler, a crime against the beaded dress of my grandmother, Aunt Ruth calling their names, where is dear Putta?

My cats meet their lives, their purpose, alight in the legs of the table, in landing on the table, in sitting under the table with twitching tail.


April 7, 2017


So I discovered that I can be a good listener and a good conversationalist. So much so that she who was unsure whether even to look at me, spoke for half an hour and would have for longer, and when I said it was lovely to talk to you, she hugged me.
So, I don’t always have to be the one who does all the saying, all the confessing, as some people need me more than I need to fill them up with my life, like I do to a very few people.
There is a reason for this.
There are quite a number of people who want to say a lot to me.
The thing that we both seemed to be reeling in shock about was: time flying, you look back at the past thirty years and think where has my life gone?
We agreed.
I have known her since I was three years old, when I had freshly landed upon this planet, and I soon found her strange brick house part of it.
Her concrete floored veranda with a fridge and cat food dried in the sun and a bluebottle buzzing the top windows. She would love to have a cat for company now, “They are more independent than dogs!” but this road would cause her so much fear and worry that it wouldn’t be worth it.



February 13, 2017

At 4.30 am my alarm sounded and immediately I went to the phone to wake him up, downstairs, I made him tea and put the packed lunch that she had made for him on the counter top. I phoned him again at 4.45 but no answer, at 4.50 he arrived with two bags of washing. He drank the tea. At 4.55 the phone rang, a pre- recorded female voice said: “Your taxi is outside”. He tipped instant coffee into his travel mug and poured in water from the kettle and milk from the fridge. At 5.00 he picked up his rucksack and gave me a one-armed hug. I bid him a nice day then he left the house. I closed the door and wanted to close the thick curtain across it but feared he may come back if something was wrong or missing so I looked through the blind to see the taxi leave then I closed the curtain, put off the light and went back to bed.

At 8.00 am I heard the phone ringing, I got up and listened to a voice message which was him saying someone needed to research his new phone as it is not working. I arranged for her to do it, leaving the handset by her half sleeping body. I went back to bed. I woke later not knowing the time. I put my jeans on over the trousers I was wearing in bed, two pairs of socks, then enclosed myself in a large hoodie that had once belonged to my eldest son when he was 14, this over the tee shirt and two jumpers I had been wearing for several days without taking them off at all. I also stuffed my feet into my trainers and descended the stairs amidst the two circling cats who wanted their breakfast.

Entering the kitchen, I guessed it might be 11.30 am but the wall clock looked alarmingly like 4 pm, which turned out to be 1.20 pm. Either way, it was much too late but the sun was bright.