Home at Last

I said goodbye to one of my favorite pieces this week...
         "Lost and Found" - I've written about it before, about that mysterious connection that happens when a human and an animal find each other. It was inspired by a brave little feral cat who decided to homestead on our porch back when Padi and I lived in the Central District. He was barely 6 or 7 weeks old when he and his sister started hanging out at my front door. The deadly combination of construction and four lanes of traffic was cutting down the feral cat population in the neighborhood and I guess they felt safe there. Anyway, the female got sick and crawled under the porch and this tiny little guy, barely the size of a tribble, stood guard over her, being as brave and fierce as he could be when we tried to get near her. Sadly, his sister passed and he was alone. So we fed him and watched through the peephole over him and when he was old enough,  we scooped him up to have him neutered. He had to recover someplace for a few days, so we kept him in my studio and watched him through the plate glass window and fell hopelessly in love with him. We named him Wheezer for his stuffy nose and silly sneezes. When he was healthy enough to let back out, we let our executive cat, Mackie Bird, in with him instead. And they lived happily ever after.
    I did this piece a couple of years ago, after saying goodbye to both those fine creatures. The gesture the little cat is making is something Wheeze would do when I held him, he'd reach out and gently pet my lips. And I would feel like we knew each other from somewhere long past.
    This week I delivered "Lost and Found" to my friend Kathleen Shaw and her friends at The Community Cat Coalition, a fine organization that is dedicated to rescuing feral cats and placing them in good homes. If you live in the Seattle area, please check them out and support them. They do good work. If you live elsewhere, I bet there's a group just like them in your area that could use your help.


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