The black cat is, alternately, glaring at me and sending pleading looks through the kitchen window, where it has found a suitable ledge to perch while attempting sophisticated inter-species communications. It parallels me along the western side of the house, becoming a shadowy image visible through the frosted glass of the bathroom as I wash and preen. The cat is a constant, complaining presence and a yowling reminder that autumn winds are blowing outside, and that the puss-level temperature is steadily declining.
The dark menace hurls itself, at the wire door fronting the house, having learned in better days, clever ways of self-opening a cat-flap from inside. The frame of the door is too heavy to be moved, and a source of cat frustration, even anger. The change of circumstances is beyond the capacity of a cat to grasp, but there will be no relenting now, the decision has been made. The cat will become an urban, outdoors dweller despite ecological un-soundness and risk to wildlife, primarily introduced bird species, but possibly crested pigeon or purple necked parrot.
Poor black cat. It could have been better, couldn’t it? If the bell around your neck had worked with any success at all. If you had less well developed instincts for the hunt and for the play. If I had tolerance for the dance of feathers through every room in the house.
Watch me through the kitchen window, shadow me to the bathroom and hurl yourself against my door if you must. For right or for wrong, your time inside is over.
© Frank Prem, 2001