Thursday, May 31, 2007

Bath time


Bath time for the ginger cats was often a strange affair.


Wednesday, May 30, 2007

We must confess


The man who lives next door likes cats. In his life he has had many cats and it is the ghosts of these cats who lead the song to the moon at night. Once he was a young man and he traveled the world. Now he is old and lives alone with a black and white cat called Ndolig.
Each day one of us visits him. Each day he puts food for us. He cannot see very well now that he is old, and he forgets things easily. Sometimes we will take it in turn to visit on the same day and each time he will feed us. Because he is forgetful he thinks we are one cat. Sometimes we queue up outside his house, and as one cat comes out another goes in.
Now She has told him that we are three. But tomorrow he will forget again.

The Moon

It is late. The almost full moon hangs in an ink blue sky. In the west there is still a fraction of light from the setting sun. This is the moment where night and day are held in balance. We walk, clock-wise, around the village, shadow cats, keeping a faint taint of orange in our fur. Or maybe it is just the memory of colour that paints our coats.
Tomorrow the moon may be full and then the village will belong to the ghost cats, and on the walls of the ruined cottages the ghost cats will gather and sing to the moon. Cats of every hue, all who have ever lived in this place and those who have come here to find peace. And over the hill, in Maes y Mynydd, the cats of the old village will call back until even the stars echo with their song.
At night, all cats are gray.

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Big cat swims.

Fantastic photos of tiger swimming. Be amused.
But then be sad to know that in the wild there are may be only 2 500 tigers left alive and free. That there are more tigers in captivity in America than there are in the wild in India.
That at least two sub-species of tigers have already become extinct, slaughtered by men, captured for zoos and circus acts and trophies.
That within our lifetime there may be no tigers left alive in the wild and that tigers may become a myth or a sideshow or a creature found only in books.
Be amused by a swimming tiger, doing what tigers do naturally.
And then know that we three cats have more freedom than all of those tigers in captivity.

We eat...


...off a golden plate.
And we are excited as we've been tagged by Ernest for the True Confessions Meme. We're told that the rules are loose. We only have to reveal as much as we want and tag as many cats as we like. We are supposed to share our deepest, darkest secrets! But this is difficult, because as cats we have a different idea of what is right and what is wrong to do.
So here goes: Three things each.

Maurice: I am not too keen on Him. This is not a problem as I know that He is jealous of me because She likes me best. Better than Him. Because I can jump up into Her arms and She catches me and we talk and She scratches the right place just behind my ear. Sometimes He is ok. When He has Parma Ham He is almost ok.
When I get cross because I am shut out I will spray, anywhere and everywhere. But this is not a wrong thing. Just reasonable behaviour. I am a cat and I go where I will.
I scratch. The corners of carpets, the sofa, the bookcase, the door, the walls and where ever I want, because I am a cat and can do no wrong.

Pixie: My best friend that is not ginger is a dog. I do not think this is a wrong thing. It is better to have friends than enemies.
I always save a bit of my food for Bella so that we can eat a little together.
It was me that ate the butter but I blamed it on the dog.

Elmo: It was me that ate the butter but the worms were controlling my mind and I hypnotized Pixie into thinking she did it.
I like Him, the Man, He's fun. With or without Parma Ham.
I like to hide under the sofa and jump out on the dogs and scare them.

And we all like to wake Her up at five in the morning, or first light in the summer, so that She gets a good long days work in.
We asked Her if she would like to put some confessions below our list but She said there were too many things and not to get Her started!

So we tag.
1. Cats with no tv, who have time for mischief.
2. The Handbag lady, who writes things.

Listening for the buzzards



Martha: Yesterday the wild wind blew and the rain came down. Today the wind had blown itself away and the sun was back and warm.
On the way up the hill the green of the path made my eyes shine.
On the top of the hill it was hot for a cat and I panted like a wild tiger, walking in India. I listened. I heard the cuckoo call again and again, and the linnets and the blackbird. I heard the distant wren and an angry pheasant, and the cuckoo answered by the warbling female.
But though the air was still I heard no buzzards call today.


Monday, May 28, 2007

Poems



Pixie: She is off to London again soon. That poetry book she coloured in is on a "shortlist", whatever that is , for some prize.
Elmo:Do you think it will be mice.
Pixie: What?
Elmo: Do you think it will be mice? The prize? Lots of them?
Maurice: You should go too Pixie. You helped Her paint it. I remember how pleased She was the day you helped with The Flower Fed Buffaloes. So pleased She nearly cried. Looked much better with those blue paw prints over it.
Pixie: Her favorite colour, that blue. French Ultramarine. We should all go. We had to put up with a lot when She was doing that book. And we helped to find the poems. All those long nights spent pawing over pages of poetry.
Maurice: I caught her a beautiful vole today, brought it to her warm and full of life. Was She pleased? No. She just took it somewhere and let it go. Now there was a prize!

Sunday, May 27, 2007

Sunshine, wind, rain and men


Maurice: Too cold to walk today. It's like winter out there.
Pixie:Was lovely yesterday though. He seems to have remembered His dog and come back to pick him up. I let him carry me again for a bit when we were out walking.
Maurice: They seemed to be arguing about something, did you hear what it was?
Pixie: She said She had been looking at a blog by some cats and there were ten of them. He said if She had ten cats He would leave her, and She said She was off to the farm then to get five kittens, all of them ginger.
Maurice: Think I'm with Him. She comes back with kittens I'm moving out too.
Pixie: Elmo is ok though. Well, apart from his tape worm problem he is ok.
Max: What's going on?
Maurice: Do you think He will remember to take the dog with Him when He goes this time? I think he is going a bit funny in the head, forgetting him all the time.
Pixie: I think kittens would be lovely, but I would miss Him. He is quite good at carrying.
Elmo: Am I having kittens?
Pixie: You're a boy, idiot. Boy's don't have kittens.
Elmo: Oh. What are these little white things then.

Saturday, May 26, 2007

Elmo's lessons

Maurice: How is Elmo getting on with his levitation practice?
Pixie: Not well.
Maurice: What do you think the problem is?
Pixie:Worms.
Maurice: Pardon!
Pixie: Too heavy. Got worms. Bit lazy too.
Maurice: I thought She was going to do something about that.
Pixie: Well, you know what She is like. Stomping about in a bad mood, cursing and talking about "deadlines" and "haven't got time" and "not enough hours in the day" and such. Anyway, you know what happened last time she tried to worm him. He bit through Her finger.
Maurice: Love me, love my worms. Anyway, what is an "hour"? Do you think if we caught one for her she would be pleased?

Friday, May 25, 2007

The Old One speaks


Gather up close now and I will begin.
I was born in a box in a house in St Davids. My mother was a farm cat my father a Siamese, sleek and beautiful, and we were three ginger and one black and white. For a while all we knew was the circle of warmth and the milk of our mother. As we grew bigger we explored further and then one day She came and took us, closed in a dark box, my brother and I, to this house.
At first we were scared, but there were children who loved us and we curled in Her studio, warm from the sun, wrapped around each other while She painted and made colours dance on paper.
We would walk up the hill with her, two bundles of fur, weaving our way through jungles of long grass. She called him Arthur, named from the sleeping king of all Britain, ancient and wise. Me, she called Martha.
And so we lived happily and grew and walked with her until one day a shadow flew low over the field and swooped and twisted around us. I was afraid, then and I ran. It was a bird, a buzzard, wide winged and ragged, searching for rabbits along the flower filled hedgerows.
After that I seldom walked, but Arthur continued to follow whenever she went. Sometimes he would visit the man who lived next door, who was lonely, and he would walk over the hill with him, keeping him company. Together they would visit the ruined cottages and talk with the ghosts of the people long gone, and Arthur would talk to the ghosts of the cats. Then as the evening light fell they would walk home together in quiet companionship.
For years we lived this life. Arthur was a hunter and would bring home rabbits, sometimes as big a himself. No rat would come near when he was around for he was sharp of tooth and claw. Then one day the man from next door brought him home. He was limp as a rag, still warm. It seemed that one of the cars that come so seldom had hit Arthur, driven away, didn't even notice.
There was a weeping in the house that night. She buried him in the garden beneath slate sand stone, a head of a lion carved from golden rock. Curled around as if a sleep, still purfect, with the golden sun caught in his ginger coat.
All night we sat and watched and waited, Bird, the black cat, Max and I.
In the morning we heard the cry of the buzzards high above and we joined our song with their lament. And it was then that I knew. The buzzards are the souls of the cats. We wish for wings. The buzzards mew with a cry like a cat and their eyes are amber and their claws are sharp.
Now when I see a buzzard I am no longer afraid for I know that Arthur is with them.
And so I walk again.

High in the sky


Maurice: I can hear a cuckoo calling, wrens, angry and warning of cats. I can hear stonechats chipping their call and a skylark. I can hear chiffchaff, blackcap and the small bell song of linnets, a trilling grasshopper warbler and a distant blackbird. I can hear a raven cronking a deep call and choughs and the sharp pin shriek of a peregrine. But high above all of these I can hear a mewing like a cat with wings.

Martha: That, my friend, is a buzzard calling. Tonight I will tell you a tale of a buzzard and a brave, bold ginger cat.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Growing up

In a house on a hill near Manchester, England, a kitten sleeps and dreams, of learning to levitate.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Elmo dreaming


All night I hunted and it was dark so only a cat with golden eyes could see.
Now I dream, and I am the ship's cat as Fitzcarraldo takes his steamship through the jungles to bring opera to Peru. Up rivers filled with sharp toothed caimen and through the rainforrest where howler monkeys chase, we struggle with the steamboat palace, mad man with his dreams and me in my dreams.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Maurice taught me how to do this....


Soon we will not be needing wings to catch the night time mice that squeak in the sky. Not jumping, but levitating.

Monday, May 21, 2007

Across the Irish Sea



As the sun set we looked across the sea and could see mountains in Ireland. The setting sun made our coats glow with a light like fire.



Hot


Many small birds have fledged and all the way on our walk we were shouted at by birds saying to their children, "That my child is a cat. Beware, beware. For they are made of claws and teeth so sharp and they love the bright flick of a moving thing. But they do not have wings and they cannot fly and that is why they are jealous of us and try if they can to stop our flight."



It is too hot to chase birds. We care not if they fly. One day we too will have wings. But we do so love to watch them trace their patterns across the sky. For now we seek cool shade and the view of a blue sea.

Sunday, May 20, 2007

Wildwoods.



The path up the hill has campion and foxgloves and the grass is growing long. At the top of the hill we explored the wildwood while the humans sat and soaked up sunshine. Foxes live here in deep burrows in the ground and all around their burrows bluebells grow beneath the low thorn trees.



When it was time to go we did not want to, so we lingered on the rock by the wildwood. The sky was full of bright blue swallows and dusky brown martins and swifts like arrows. How we wish for wings!


Saturday, May 19, 2007

100



Sunshine. Walking to the sea, just me and the dogs. Maurice and Elmo were busy sleeping or hunting. We walked over the hill to the rocks were the fox lives, big, bright and red, then down to the sea.



A long time since I have walked so far, but we rested here were the sea sweeps around the Gessel and She watched the bright white birds, looking for porpoise. The waves swept across and the sea looked silver where the sun shone. It was warm out of the wind.




A long way to the Gessel, so on the way back I let Him carry me. He is quite good at carrying.

Friday, May 18, 2007

Tonight.....

.... the sharpest of claw moons hangs in the sky, close behind the sun. The wolf wind howls and flattens our ears with its breath. Cold. Tonight is a night to stay in, curled up and warm, for tonight the storm cat and the ghost cat dance a wild dance. There is danger in the air.
Soon the moon will set, and only the stars will pin the dark of night to the sky. Tonight belongs to the big cat.

Small cats, big cats, funny families.

Bella being lovely and looking after us all when we were kittens saw this and now she wants some tigers too. It seems that in China cats and dogs get on very well too.

Mostly sleeping.


Outside the clouds have fallen down from the sky and it is all wet, so today we will be mostly sleeping, and helping Hannah to read.

Thursday, May 17, 2007

The other dog.


Sometimes when the man comes to stay, the man who sometimes brings parma ham when he comes to stay, he also brings the other dog whose name is Larry. And Larry likes to run and chase and has a tail that is good to play with. But he does not chase us.
This time when he came to stay, the man, with the ham, he forgot to take his dog with him when he went, to wherever it is that he goes when he is not here, where ham comes from.

Up a tree.


Maybe if we climb high enough we will be able to catch the night time flying mice and will not be needing wings.

Monday, May 14, 2007

Because we have no wings.

Walking in the gloaming light the sky is dappled with cloud and not even a claw moon hangs yet. It is too early for moonrise. Above there are flying mice, many many flying mice, that shriek a song almost unheard, sharp noise that stings the ears. But we cannot catch them.

After the rain.



Pixie: The sun was hot again and the grass deep green and long after the rain. Years ago cats lived in this house and still when the wind blows soft we can hear them calling, calling and see their shadows on the tumbling stone walls.


Radio days.

Radio Wales rang to interview us, but we were all sleeping in cupboards so She took the call for us and talked to Roy Noble. Pixie, sleeping in the kitchen overheard all. We are beginning to think that She is becoming a bit jealous of our fame. Silly human. What can she expect when she has no beauteous coat of ginger loveliness. And we are beginning to think that She is exploiting our fame, talking about Her painting as much as our striding.
Yesterday it rained, and though the water came down from the sky and scratched at our eyes and our ears and our tails like cat claws, and was cold, still we walked with Her and the dogs, to the top of the hill, where the wind blew our ears flat to our heads and the rain beat hard. Today there is sunshine, wind and whitecat clouds running fast against the blue.

Sunday, May 13, 2007

Seven random things about being ginger.

It is raining and we are not walking but great excitement as we have been tagged and memed. And so we are confused because we are tagging virgins. But it is raining and we have little to do other than get into trouble for eating books, so here goes.


1. We carry the light of the sun in our fine coats of fur.
2. Even in the darkest night a little of a red cat can still shine bright as starlight reflects from the fire in our fur.
3. We are almost indistinguishable from a jar of marmalade.
4. We do not taste good when spread on toast.
5. Together we attract attention, by our colour and the fine points of our tufted ears.
6. We contrast splendidly with bluebells.
7. Each of us has eyes of slightly different hue, but all of us have eyes that shine and carry a little of the bright light of fire.


So, seven random things we can do, but we need educating in the world of memes as they mean something different to our human. And how to tag back!
Oh dear.
1.To Kitikata-san, you beautiful redcat of glowing coat.
2.Ernesto, the pied beauty with a human with good taste in picture books.

Saturday, May 12, 2007

How does she do that!


Evening walking, and Martha and Hannah came too.
Pixie: How does she do that thing with her hair?
Maurice: Beats me. I have to get really scared before I can make my hair stand on end.
Elmo: Anyone else got worms?
Pixie: I think I might have. Time for a bit of mind control. Lets send her off to the vets.
Maurice: Still doesn't explain how Hannah can do that hair thing.

Serial killer


Caught in the act, Maurice dispatched yet another rat into the afterlife. At night he dreams of giant rats that hunt the cat, by day he hunts, for it is his belief that only his presents of rats enable the muse to flow in the house by the sea.

Return of the ginger cow.


Ginger cow: Small cow, no horns?
Pixie: If a cat could whistle nonchalantly, now would be the time.

Ginger and blue



Walking in sunshine through bluebells, we shine.



Maurice: I knew that levitation practice would come in handy one day.

( Elmo still sleeping in cupboard)

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Newspapers and what they are good for.


Pixie: If you sit on them they are quite warm.
Maurice: Erm, isn't that the one we were in yesterday? I'm not sure She will be pleased that you are sitting on it.
Pixie: If She didn't want it sat on She shouldn't have put it here. It's not bad, though, but she didn't mention our great beauty enough I think.
Elmo: I've been in a cupboard all day. I like cupboards.

Rain clouds gather.



In this high place you can see the weather coming. Our whiskers say that it will rain and the air smells of rain. Over the sea it is gray as a gray cat and sunshine cuts through the clouds in islands of light.
The tree by the rock is covered in tiny white flowers and leaves. Good shelter. Good climbing.
She is quietly getting on with painting and has ceased her stamping and moaning that she cannot draw. For now.




And for now, we are off to hide in a cupboard and sleep.

Media stars.



Pixie: She's been very quiet today.
Maurice: She's been painting at last. Think the rat I brought her yesterday must have inspired her.
Pixie: Nice walk this morning. Grass was a bit wet though.
Maurice: I see we made the national newspapers again.
Elmo: I think I've got worms.

In the dark woods.




After days and weeks of blue the sky is dapple patterned with cloud. Together we marched along the lichen covered wall, though the long grass was wet.
Then we came to the place of the dark wood, where bluebells grow under short thorn trees.
Here the night creatures live, huge pawed and clawed and black and white. Now they sleep and snore, deep in dark burrows in nests of moss. At the doors of their burrows we can hear their dreams.


Tuesday, May 8, 2007

Rats tales from Maurice.

No lizards could I find, so I brought Her a plump young rat, still warm. She was very excited but it did not seem to help as still She mopes around the house saying that She cannot draw and does not like to paint. It is cold, but I will look for a lizard instead. Or maybe two rats would brighten Her smile. Humans can be so very difficult to please.

Sunday, May 6, 2007

Bed

Floss. "What am I going to do? There's a cat in my bed! The ginger one. Ahhhh! Oh no! Somebody help me!
Pixie. "Shut up. I'm trying to sleep. What makes you think it is your bed. Get your bum out of my bed, dog."

Spring


Here, by the sea, high above, I found water coming out of the rocks. Magic.

Conversation overheard....



Pixie: "She seems a bit stressed."
Maurice. " Yes. Keeps muttering abut some big painting or other. Almost finished. Fuss fuss fuss."
Pixie. " We could help, but she shuts the door and even when I scratch the carpet up she won't let me in to help."
Elmo." I like mice."
Maurice. " I could bring her another lizard. That always seems to get her excited."
Pixie. " I think she needs to calm down. She wanders around the house kicking things and swearing and being horrid to the children and that odd man who likes to pick me up and pretend I am a concertina. I think we should sit on her and let her stroke us. That always seems to help."
Elmo. " I like him. But not as much as mice."
Maurice. "I'll sit on her book next time she is reading. She needs a rest."
Elmo. " I like this rock. Listen. Birds. They always shout so loud!"
Pixie. " Come on, time to walk."
Elmo. "Wish I had wings."

Bluebells



These blue flowers mask the smell of mice!








Friday, May 4, 2007

Red Moon.

Last night a red moon hung in the sky. A moon for ginger cats. The wind had changed and the noise from the sea came also from a different direction. The shadow cat was prowling and our whiskers twitched for something witching was about.
Today the air smells clear and fresh and full of life.

Thursday, May 3, 2007

And Billy came to visit.



At last, the elegant Billy came to see us, bringing Claire and the other one, who is so very good at catching fish and lobsters. We do like him, and his lobsters, but he does frown at us when we sit on the kitchen table. He is lucky to even be in our kitchen.
But Billy the bold has such beautiful eyes and is almost ginger. He was scared of us when we were kittens.

Ginger kitten reads blog!



Mitten the kitten reading. Very young to be reading but then we cats are oh so clever. We can tell by the feeling in our whiskers that soon it will be raining.

Early morning walking....



...in among the bluebells.