I usually post a video on Friday mornings, but I can’t seem to find one that fits today. You see, last evening we said goodbye to our loyal feline companion, Isaac. I could post a sentimental video tribute — a little Sarah McLaughlin would have us all in tears within seconds. But Isaac would not like us to be all in tears today — he never did. He was a great consoler to the sad and the grieving. He was one of those cats that makes it impossible to answer the questions “Are you a dog person or a cat person?” because he possessed the best traits of both. He was a lap cat among lap cats, but he would also come running to the door when you got home from work.
No doubt he had a good life. Nineteen years ago Unnamed Partner stopped in at her local 7-11 and found a little black & white kitten who kept running in the door every time a customer entered the store. Every time the employees shoo-ed him out — only to have him sneak in again. It seems customers were feeding him hotdogs. Mmmmm.
I think it was love at first sight. He followed her home and has been with her through thick and thin and back again. He knew her longer than I have.
I recently watched a documentary called “Dogs: An Unconditional Love Story,” which non-dog lovers may find way too sentimental at times. (I loved it.) At one point, poet Billy Collins reads a poem written from the viewpoint of his dog Dharma. And despite Collins’ disparaging remarks toward the feline population (I disagree with him that in heaven, cats are hacks and only write prose), I’m going to post it here. I think Isaac would be okay with this dog’s-eye point of view, since he so easily straddled the canine/ feline divide.
A Dog on His Master
As young as I look,
I am growing older faster than he,
seven to one
is the ratio they tend to say.
Whatever the number,
I will pass him one day
and take the lead
the way I do on our walks in the woods.
And if this ever manages
to cross his mind,
it would be the sweetest
shadow I have ever cast on snow or grass.