Saturday, April 18, 2020

A Week And A Day

Well, what do you do when all the unused pictures you have have an OTB cat in them?  You show them in loving memory, and you write a bad poem.

These are the last pictures of Iza.

But there is a story to tell about the last.  On her final day out on the deck, she oddly chose to sit partially under the smoker cover.  And partially in the rainwater that collected in the deck-protecting tray underneath.

Here's the thing I needed to think about for a few days.

When she sat on the deck the last day, there were a couple of vultures that sat in the tree above her.  They never did that before.  I saw them above a rabbit that was dying in the yard next door once, though.  From what I've read, vultures are entirely visually-oriented and have a poor sense of smell.

I think that is untrue.  They KNEW she was dying.  I generally understood that she was having serious medical issues.  But I went out and waved my hands at them and they went away for a while.  But they returned. 

I brought her inside, and indeed, she basically fell apart physically overnight.  It was slow for a few months, but quick at the end, and I am grateful for that in a way.

But those vultures KNEW!

I don't mean to be spooky, I don't mean to be scary, I don't mean to assign vultures extrasensory abilities.  But they couldn't see her and they KNEW.  They say vultures can't smell.  I think they can. I think they smelled death coming.

When I brought Iza inside, they left.

And now a bad poem.  More a prose, I suppose.  Based loosely on 'One More Bell To Answer'...

One less can to open,
One less bowl to clean,
One less litter box to empty.

I should be happy
But all I do is cry...

Since she left, my life’s so empty.
Though the others remain, I just can’t forget.
Each time I wake in the night, she’s not there.
I don’t know how in the world
To stop thinking of her,
And her spot on the bed is bare.

No more lap-napping,
No more purrs.
No more stroking of fur,
No more heaty-mat lounging,
No more she’s just “there”.

And I think that is the last I should say except for future Flashback Fridays  (of which she will of course be included). 

Thank you all for caring.  It is now time to move on.  Take pictures of Ayla and Marley, take pictures of the garden, but also as I build Iza's marker and equally consider a new addition to The Mews. 

Iza's door here has closed.  But it also opens to a new kitty.  The Tonkie breeder I contacted is suddenly not being responsive.  I suspect that means their waiting list is filled.  I choose to not wait for long.  There are many other cats that need a good home.



  1. I dunno if it's a good poem or a bad poem TBT - but it was from the heart and, in the end, that's what matters.

    Sydney, Australia

  2. What a poignant baring of your feelings, TBT...aka Mark...not a bad poem at all, its filled with grief, and love.

    You know there were a couple of huge tTurkey Vultures here the other day...Wednesday I, they would not leave even with the barking dogs. They only went away after I shooed them away...not sure if they are like the vultures you saw...but they sure are not the most lovely wonder you had much to think about when you saw them.

    Here is an interesting article about them:

    Pipo sends his purrs to you all:)

  3. Nature knows, it is wiser than we are. It makes us move on too.
    Thank you for the poem, and the photos. They are precious.

  4. The vultures may well have a poor sense of smell, but they must have that sixth sense that so many living creatures have, and I agree that they did know.
    As Megan said, your poem was written from the heart and that makes it a good poem. It made me cry again.
    I am not a huggy sort of person and I think that you probably are not either, but I really do wish I could give you a big hug.

  5. I think you are right, the vultures knew but that's the way of nature. Maybe the breeder is having covid issues, hard to tell when someone doesn't respond these days. Hugs from all of us.

  6. I think all of us who lost a cat can appreciate that poem.
    The new cat you choose is going to be very lucky <3
    Purrs,Georgia and Julie
    and the mum(Nancy)

  7. Mark, are you familiar with the Buddhist concept of The Bardo ? It applies even to all living, sentient beings.

  8. That was a nice poem. One line though, you don't know how to forget- you don't have to forget- Iza was a big part of your life and will always be there in your heart. I think the vultures knew too. And Iza was wise enough to know they knew. XO

  9. I love your poem, and the pictures. I agree that as chilling as it was, the vultures did know. Hugs to all of you there.

  10. That is spooky about the vultures... but I think you are right.

  11. Animals are very intuitive. It’s their they survive. We’ll never tire of seeing pics of Iza. You can share them anytime.

  12. Oh yeah, those birdies knew. They can sense weakness.

  13. That had us in tears, as well it may have you. Sending lots of purrs, and weare sure there is another door to open soon, maybe sooner than you think.

  14. Many of us who have lost our cats know that overwhelming grief upon the loss. It takes a long time and conscious effort to get past it.

  15. Like all good poems, yours came from the heart. But moving on doesn't mean you forget.
    Iza will whisper in your ear some day soon and let you know which kitty she has picked out for you.

  16. Beautiful photos, beautiful poem and beautiful memories. Shortly before my childhood cat Patch passed of a brain tumor my mom took him out on his leash for some sunshine. A neighbor kitty stopped by and smelled him all over. The smell of death was there.


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