Sunday, September 27, 2015

Lily Marlena

A few years ago, I made a baby quilt for my nephew. The kitties decided to test it out. 

In 2001, my friend Mike called to say he'd found a sick kitten in his bushes. His cat was having none of her, so Mike got her patched up and brought her to me. Lily crept out of her carrier and nuzzled my grumpy old orange cat, Atticus, and presented her ears to Esme, my recently adopted sweetheart. They loved her.

Lily was a social kitten. I would come home from work to four or five cats on my porch, mooning over this beautiful girl. One of them, Leprechaun, moved in shortly after that.

She loved belly rubs on her terms, which were communicated via razor claws. Her purrs were impossibly loud, while her chirpy meows were barely audible.

She was all of seven pounds, but would post herself under the cherry tree, growling, determined to catch a squirrel. She never did, as far as I know, but we found a possum tail on the porch not long ago. Maybe she was successful in her last few weeks.

I miss her. When I come home, I look for a dash of white, then come up short.

A few weeks before she died, she sat on my lap for a long time, despite the draw of a gorgeous summer day outside, despite the big, curious dog next to her. I told myself to savor this--her spiderweb-silk fur, her crystal blue eyes squinting in contentment.

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