My sweetheart cat, the best cat in the whole world died last night. The Vet called first thing this morning and told me that crow didn't make it through the night. My brain feels a little numb, like everything synapsed at the same time, interconnective firings that somehow missed.
My mom came in on a train this morning from Lancaster. We picked her up and went to see my brother compete in the Eastern Tree Climbing Competition. He told me that he would dedicate his climb to Crow. Michael finished second in the MidAtlantic Interstate Competition last year, I love to see him climb, so graceful and powerful. I loved to watch Crow climb. We saw Michael climb in his first event this morning, up the rainy trunk of a 70 foot deciduious hardwood in a gorgeous graveyard in West Philadelphia. I had been crying most of the morning, my cuddly, athletic, free-spirited, intellegent, super-friendly puma by day, cuddle cat by night had died rather unexpectantly. I was around a rainy graveyard. I can't believe the colors of the azalea today.
We left Michael to go pick up Crow before his final event. He told me later on that as he left the ground to begin his ascent he heard Crow Roar and saw a close-up of her eyes in a yellow flash. The other climbers told Michael that it was one of the most graceful and powerful free climbs they had ever seen. He advanced to the state finals today.
We had to leave to go find blankets. We bought blankets for Cheryl, the other farmer at the greenhouse, for the baby that grows within her. We also bought a blanket for Crow, for laying her to rest.We wrapped her in the blanket with the little paw prints 40" by 30" and shrouded her cardboard casket with another.
At the baby shower I sat near Cheryl and celebrated the life that is growing within her, yet I sat on my own mourning bench, silent and turning, yet not moving.
When 5 o'clock came quite a few of my closest friends, the Junior Farmers, some neighbors, and lots of children gathered in the back of the garden beside the greenhouse by the Virgin Mary to share Crow's Last Rites, to bless her and release her spirit, to thank her for being the best garden kittie we could ever imagine. Everybody each took a turn taking a scoop of soil out of the ground, and we placed her inside the grounds that she prowled in Camden for 3 years.
Everyday she walked with me to work, she walked with me out to the greenhouse. She would sit and watch the children planting seeds, she had many many friends, who came to the garden to see her. She broke down walls of conflict, and just made a lot of people smile. She was a happy cat quick to purrrr, returning to the earth late last night, to meet her stillborn kitties, and all our other friends with paws extended, up there at that big greenhouse in the sky. I feel deeply in my heart how much I miss her, I didn't realize how much I think about her everyday. I think of her when I am away, and when I come home. she was always at my feet. She would be sitting here, on my lap with me now as I type these words, she has sat with me here every night until she went into the hospital on Thursday. This is our favorite seat. Her son is still with me. I love him very much, but it makes me sad to see him looking for his mother. He doesn't like to come and sit on my lap, but he sits on the floor nearby.
A farmer's shovel is for planting. Today I planted hope that all our hearts are a little more open, a little more joyful, a little more spiritual for letting the stray cats of our lives in. Crow is in all of our hearts now.
I buried a turtle when I was in first grade, a frog in 11th grade, and today I buried my cat, my best friend. My mind is still a blur, I miss her, today in the spring most fertile.
Here is a dedicated poem to Crow from one of her favorite friends:
My spirit wanders aimlessly the fence rows and alleys of Waterfront South, the dream is over as I slip into her lap one last time. Going home, Love always.
. . . . .today in the spring most fertile.
If the calendar year is divided into two halves we have now entered the summer half of the year, here in the northern hemisphere. What Groundhog's Day is to Spring, Beltane (May Day) is to summer.
Today is the Celtic day of Beltane. It is the midway point between the vernal equinox and summer solstice, the day of full spring alive. (kinda like groundhog's day for the summer). It is the day of Celtic fire making, their first day of summer when the herds of livestock were driven out to the summer pastoral lands, and fires were built on the Hill of Tara, Newgrange, and the Stones of Time. These of course, all central to the spirit and the politico. We build our fire. We build our fire with our hands, kindled with the lath taken from the houses in our neighborhood the carpernters are rebuilding. We built a big fire in the rain and baked our cake for Beltane.
The carpernters are building with their hands in Waterfront South. Today is also the Feast Day of St. Joseph for the roamin catholics. He was the patron saint of so many life giving endevours, let's see if i can recap. . . he's got travelers, carpenters, refugees, dreamers, hands, feeding the needy, our first fruits, grapes hospice workers, fava beans, and appearently "fighting communism."
WHich brings me to May Day. Of course we would need to fight communists on May Day, in affiliation with the Haymarket Riots and the prostesting laborers for the establishment of the eight hour day in 1886, now all called the International Workers Day. 7 police officers were killed during the protest for the 8 hour day. 8 anarchists were tried and killed for murder.
So dig up the Lilly of the valley that are growing in your back yard, today on this day sacred of fully opened, and give it to someone you Love. we do this as joseph adroning his beloved.
A year ago today I was sitting on the front steps of my house that I hadn't bought yet, filled with love, and falling through the following of my mind's moebius strip. We were talking of love and tragedy when a rooster that had claimed my new backyard as his own, was running across the street and was struck down by a truck flying by on 4th Street. The rooster is the spirit animal of sexuality, watchfulness, and resurrection.