Category Archives: prose

BOTH SIDES

 

window cat

It was time to wash the windows and I wondered where to start.

“I have an idea,” meowed a familiar voice.

And I knew the idea would require much of me. So I pretended not to listen and began to gather up some cleaning materials. It really didn’t matter so much where I started. All the windows needed cleaning.

“Just start,” I thought.

Anywhere.

“Oh yes,” she purred. Anywhere indeed.

I smiled.

So allow me to present to you my cat. She shows up in my writing from time to time. Her full name is Annie B Whiskers the Mafia Cat. The B stands for Bonino and I usually call her Mrs. Bonino or Annie. She is 7 years old, which I think means that she is 49. The very same age that I am. This is the one year that will be the case. Next year I will be 50 and she will be 56. We are getting older, she and I.

She tells me important things and sometimes I ignore them. I do not like her advice about men for example. She is usually correct but does not pussyfoot around when it comes to the truth. I like the truth but sometimes I like to control the timing a little.

Besides, her experience with males is pretty pathetic so I do not think she is in a position to point her little Bonino paw at me.

Oh yes, we are talking about windows and I have gotten sidetracked by the topic of “men” again. I am on a “man” break at the moment. In recovery so to speak.

So yes…the windows.

Annie was staring at me. “Are you going to start inside or outside?” she asked. “Doesn’t much matter,” I said. “ Does it?”

“Depends,” she said,“on whether you can see what you miss from each side. Sometimes if you start on the outside, you miss the inside bits. And then when you go inside you realize you have missed a couple of outside bits and when you go to fix them… well – anyways its up to you of course.” And she hopped up on the sofa.

“So you are saying maybe I should start on the inside?” I asked.

“Not at all, she said. “Like you said, just start.”
“Great,” I thought to myself. Because I knew I was missing something. Now it mattered to me where to start.

Annie was snoring. With her eyes wide open. Not purring. Snoring. I reached over the sofa where she lay and sprayed a little window cleaner on the glass. As I began to wipe, she began to snore more quietly and her eyes closed and she fell into her afternoon cat coma. I cleaned and polished and checked and cleaned. When I thought it was perfect, I slipped on my shoes and popped out to do the outside next.

This time I used a bit stronger cleaner in a bucket and I really scrubbed and dried and polished. I looked through the window and saw my little friend still curled up sleeping and twitching away.

 

“Pretty good,” I smiled, satisfied with myself. Now I was really in the mood to do the rest. I went in to admire my work and to begin the next window.

Spots.

Little smudges.

Smears.

I looked at my cat with her eyes closed and I knew she was wide awake. I leaned over her and tried to polish the spots that were clearly on the outside.

“I think I need help,” I said aloud to no one in particular.

“Exactly,” came a nod from the couch.

Thanks, Mrs. B.

 

Catherine MacAdam

Image source: Heritage Cat Clinic

SEPTEMBER SEEDS

4.1.1

Pentimento – Visible evidence of an alteration to a painting or drawing that indicates the artist changed their mind while executing the painting. This can leave an effect where ‘ghosting’ lines from the original design can be seen through the thinning paint.

Between the scenes and telling me that honesty dreamed dreams of me I found the oddest little seed that promised not reality…not quite real – and yet the dream left finger prints of seeds on me.

I did not leave them knowingly or if I did their scattering had left the sense that what I see was only you and was not me…

But in between…

Crisp the air between us feeds the need to follow and to lead; at once this song was dancing me and I was in its grasp.

Love is all about belief and casts its light indelibly where morning meets the grassy eve and leaves the dew of honesty.

You gave your place with shy retreat and slipped back in so quietly.

Do you watch where I have been and trace a path and watch again as I encounter covering that lets me try again…

The shadows warm and shelter me and there is light between these dreams. Call them back and I will find their gentle path to what we see and what we cover in between…

Catherine MacAdam

Image Source: Vanitas Stilleven – Omgeving Rembrandt

NEXT TO YOU

Annie look alike

Mrs. Bonino…she is still here. Fat cat, brat cat, my favourite muse and friend. It is not really that we have not been speaking. We have. I have not been writing about our talks because she asked me not to.

She said “Cats don’t talk”…this is not good for your rep baby.. Makes you look a little loose in the brain box if you know what I mean.”

Her advice always cuts to the proverbial point – and I do mean “cuts”.

But today as she was rolling on the floor in her vast flesh and fur she gazed up at me and said, “take this down.”

And so as I ran around looking for a sharp pencil or a not dried out pen and some scrap of paper with space on it, she began to speak.

“Annie,” I said. “SLOW down…I don’t want to miss anything.”

And she said, “You will though, as always, because you are so busy trying to read and write the world that you don’t get the world under your feet.”

“But you said, write it down…and…”

“But look what you are doing,” she said. LOOK at yourself and then listen to me.”

So I stopped and listened. This is what I remember. I may have missed things of course because I did not write it down.

1. Take a chance with your dreams ~ because I want to get next to you.

2. Don’t be afraid of time passing ~ because I want to get next to you.

3. Don’t waste time and do what you are able to do ~ because I want to get next to you.

4. Feed me Friskies which is my favorite food and then feed me more ~ because I want to get next to you.

5. Stroke my fur…I love that ~ because I want to get next to you.

6. And give me all your sweet, sweet loving today, tomorrow and all our days ~ because I am waiting ~ to get next to you.

Thank you Mrs. B.

 

Catherine MacAdam

Image Source: Pinterest

 

MOTHER WOLF/TIGER CHILD

wolf and girl

She said, “the wolf will come…he will…the wolf will come…” and it was intended as a threat. And the wind blew and she said, “Hear him? He is coming…”

I knew it was only the wind. At three years old I knew this but I believed her about the wolf as well. I stood at the screen door smelling the storm to come and watched and waited. I believed he would come. I watched and watched for him in the blowing wind that howled her words. So cold she was.

And then one hot August night…when no one thought of him at all and not even me I looked into a window and he filled its pane. He came. My wolf, my side, my teaching stone. I was only four and filled with fear but I did not look away. His hot eyes beckoned. And I stood for many hours after that watching and waiting for his return. Until we left.

I did not see him for years again. I know he has always been with me. My soldier guide. My warrior heart.

Pretty Hannah came to my daughter when she was four. Just as full and fiercely came to guard her path. And shine light even in the light itself. Pretty Hannah, the Tiger Brave, who even now, is by her side.

We are bound by our own purpose and theirs. Chosen and guarded. And making our way through the wind. No matter what the others say.

Catherine

GYPSY GRASS

Gypsey grass

 

 

 

 

 

You asked me for a story – and I just do not have that many

stories left. They fell into a cooling pot of yesteryears and best

just left and then I remembered – there is one story I would like

to tell. The story of the Gypsy Grass. The softest greenest place

to go is just inside the Gypsy Grass. The bears and frogs are

resting now and we can walk and feel the spell that is the waiting

Gypsy Grass.

A long time ago before the time of shoes and clanging bells we

still knew the silence of being alone with another heart. Take my

hand and we will go and listen to a song of grass and greenest

brown and morning scent. The closest place between the last

most tender memory the earth would ever weave is waiting in the

grass and love of child and earth and gentle beast.

If I could sing a song to you this would be what I would choose.

I would brush your skin with truth and I would sing to you of days

that we have yet to celebrate and memories we have yet to

make. I would hum against your cheek a song of shell and

evergreen. You could close your eyes and see the light

that shows where we will meet.

And all around the Gypsy Grass is waiting for your heart to

meet a vision of what you have dreamed and ever after you will

know – some things are real because of you and they are called the

sacred truth.

The bears and frogs are stirring now because they want to

honour you. I can hear you in the grass. And I can feel your

longing reach and when you capture what you need only then to

set it free, we will plant our harmony and paint a song

remembering and we will lay our kisses down upon the

fragrant Gypsy Grass.

C. MACADAM