For the last six months she battled with feline asthma, and though she rallied after several setbacks, there was literally no breath left. I am thankful that she is no longer in discomfort or pain while struggling to survive - but I am utterly, uttlerly heartbroken.
On the bed, we both commune: me duvet-deep on propped-up pillows,
she purring a syrupy rumble like sweet treacle, treading my legs in a
kickback to kittenhood, each push-pull of paw a pseudo mother-milk;
at my feet, back paws touching my toes; contact is crucial to her – our –
wellbeing, a paw-shake of family. She is wise, this contented little-lioness.
Sleep stretches her out: tummy tufts soft and deep as a thousand downy owls;
whiskers recline, twitch her dreams – what mouse, what bird is this she sees?
Paws busy with pink pads like gum is full of bubble, un-popped as yet but
soon to be: mog-mischief will strike when the imp-itch is upon her; in play
she courts contrariness: needs door-open but then open-door is boring.
Tail twitches once, twice, thrice: agitates then awakens her; she stirs and,
with a lick and a scratch, is revived – a puss-cat on patrol once again,
she jumps down and trots across the room with a rub-here and a rub-there,
surveying, marking her territory. I feel her absence, miss her near me but
respect her still: she is regal now, intent on matters of cat-state that no simple
human can disturb or dissuade. The intimacy she allows me time and again is
humbling, warming. Loving. I reciprocate this call: I too am one of this clan.
(I never did think to take the camera to bed so I could catch a snap of Giz napping next to me, but this is the next best thing: Mr Bear, who stood in for my legs when a tread was needed!)
I'll love and miss you always, Giz - see you in the big blue sky one day xxx