Sunday, February 8, 2009

Yin and Yang and Yowling

I’ve come to expect in everything, balance.
Spring rains that dissolve the crumbled earth of an autumn that was far too dry.
Abundant young from just 2 single birds that ensures their parents’ replacement.
And even, the night of rest that will follow sleeplessness, or, in this case, the reverse.

A cat yowled in the night beneath my window.
And, more than the interruption of my sleep by its crying, was the intrusion of tangled thoughts that followed until dawn.
What does one do with that cat?

Lily on upstairs porch

Lily came to us 2 years ago, a small, young cat, slinking from under the garage doors one spring, as we stood in the driveway talking with friends. Starved of attention and food, within minutes, she charmed us into loving her for life. By the time she was spayed and settled into our room upstairs, Lily had already crossed paths with a male--his kittens, not to be in her future.

Kittens beneath barn floor

The next spring brought yet another young cat.
This time, to our barn, and this time already with 5 tiny kittens that soon became motherless and were raised… in our room upstairs.
Now, four, Max, Alex, Olivia, and Lucy have become ours, all spayed or neutered and content to join Lily as indoor cats.

Upsetting, it must have been, in the quiet of a dark night, to the five cats roused from their peaceful sleeping amidst the human lumps beneath the bedcovers, to hear this stranger’s yowling outside.
But not half as unsettling as it was to the lump beneath them, who wonders, “What does one do with that cat?”

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Kallen305 said...

I so feel your pain Nina. I too took in a mother cat with her 5 kittens and still have them. I also have a couple of cats that people have abandoned and they have found there way to my door.

What I do is I first look in every lost and found I can. If I determine the cat isn't lost, I try and get them into a no kill shelter. It is really hard to do that now due to so many people dropping off their pets with the economy and all. More often than not, I keep them. I pray no more come to my yard though because I have too many as it is and really don't want anymore. Once I see they sad face and needy eyes though I melt. I am a softie like that and I am guessing you are too.

Good luck in whatever you chose to do.

Kallen305 said...

they = theirs obviously. Typed too fast.

nina at Nature Remains. said...

Kallen--Yes, you do know, then if you also have five!
The five I have I will keep--they've become family and we've gotten used to sharing our bed.
But, the cruising male...that darts off as soon as I peek outside--but no doubt, lurks, waiting for the next single female to walk past.
I'm almost afraid to look in the barn--in a few weeks we may find another has moved in.
It seems, with each spring, comes another family.

Susan Gets Native said...

So, I guess that makes it SIX, now?


Mary said...

My Mom always had a barn full of cats on the farm. Never had a mouse problem...

Toni said...

Nina I feel for you also. I wish I had answers for you.

nina at Nature Remains. said...

I feel that if I could eliminate this male and what appears to be a spring ritual, the last 2 years' additions would stop.
I can not find another pregnant kitty this year, too.

Lisa at Greenbow said...

Maybe this marauder will move on.? I used to live in the country. This was a perennial problem. People also dumped dogs near us. UGH..One of them was a chicken killer...oh the stories of living in the country and the people that would dump their poor unsuspecting pets.

Appalachian Lady said...

I had 2 cats (adopted) a few years and I didn't want anymore because of the birds. But, a stray showed up shortly thereafter. The SPCA lady took it, got it spayed, and put it in her barn. She lived 4 miles away but the cat quickly found my place again and I still have her. This is a recurring problem if you live in the country. I feel for you.

KGMom said...

I think that there are folks who just assume when they see a barn that it's fair game to drop off a cat or two.
Not to say your wandering yowling male comes from there, but the potential mother cats--maybe.
Your Lily is such a pretty cat--with such a pretty name.
I love the photo of the shy peeking kittens.

Deborah Godin said...

Be sure to let us know what you name this one.... ;-)

KatDoc said...

I, too, have acquired a barn cat. He, or she, I'm not sure which, is a scrawny, spooky thing that runs whenever I appear. It hangs out in the rafters of my barn or amongst the hay bales, and has twice scared the life out of me when I feed the horses in the dim light of early morning or the dark of night. I am not putting out food for it, hoping it will get the hint and move on. What to do, what to do ...


possumlady said...


It is so hard deciding what to do.

Only five? There's always room for one more :-)

I've been feeding and watching over a cat since early December. I thought I had found its owner but no such luck. So for now, I'm feeding it and have named it---does that now make it mine?

I need another cat like I need another hole in my head.

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