Goodnight Darwin

Word of the Day Challenge: Sad

Darwin 2014 Photo A.M. Moscoso

My cat died on Tuesday.

His name was Darwin and he was going to be 18 years old this Summer.

Darwin came into our family when my sons were in highschool, he grew up with my dogs and his two littermates- Blitzer and Micey.

Blitzer and Micey and my dogs Domino and Cerbie went on before him.

My friend who  gave me those three little kittens died about 5 years ago.

Darwin was the last tie to the time when my family were in our youth.

His passing meant so much more then what it appeared to be on the surface.

Darwin used to walk with me and my dog Domino- who was suffering from heart failure at the end of her life.

He sat with her as she died.

Darwin sat with my cat Wolfgang as he passed away too.

Darwin sat with me on the days when I was told my Dad and then my cousin died.

He wasn’t an overly affectionate cat by nature. He wasn’t a cuddler. Darwin never jumped into your lap and asked for attention. He did have his  moments where he would pop up and ask for scritches  and loved to play with toys with us. But Darwin was very independent and we respected that.

But if he knew something was really wrong, he was there and he wouldn’t leave your side if he could feel your grief or fear.  He didn’t crawl into your lap. He didn’t meow or purr. He just sat there right next to you like one of those statutes of the Egyptian Cat Goddess Bastet.

He was watching over you, protecting you.

It really was comforting.

When I came home from work on Tuesday I could see that Darwin was getting ready to leave. So I wrapped him up in his favorite blanket and I opened the blinds on the window so that he could at least feel the Sun.

He was gone about 15 minutes later.

Photo A.M. Moscoso

I could tell you great stories about Darwin- like how he decided he was going to be a dog instead of a cat.

I learned about his plan when I started to notice he developed a horrible dry hacking cough. I took him to the vet fearing cancer. What else could it be?

The Vet listened to his chest and then shook his head. He didn’t hear anything, but maybe we should do Xrays. I was about to agree when a dog walked by the exam room and Darwin jumped up on the ledge where there was a little window overlooking the hallway and he started…to cough and cough and cough.

The Vet said to me, ” You know. I won’t charge you for this visit because I don’t have the heart to bill you for the pleasure of watching Darwin bark.”

Darwin used to be right in the middle of the Welcome committee when I came home from work- there were two big dogs, assorted kids asking for either my car keys or money and in the middle of that giant overwhelming crowd was Darwin- who only ever got to be a little more then half the size of his brothers and had short legs, a short tail and a round head and he never weighed more then 6 pounds.

He kept his footing, he would not be moved. He pushed his way to the front of that pack- and barked too and demanded attention too.

I am sad, broken hearted. My home seems so much bigger and emptier now that Darwin isn’t in it.

Above that all though is the one thing that brings me joy and overshadows that grief.

I was lucky to have had that wonderful Soul in my life and that warms my heart.

Darwin and Domino
Photo A.M. Moscoso

The Window Watchers

Putting My Feet In The Dirt Prompt#25- Feline Good

Photographer Unknown

I thought that tonight

would be a good night

to sit at my window, put my feet up

with a warm cup of tea warming my hands and my bones

and that I could wait for the snow to fall,

for the Christmas lights to twinkle and pop on

up and down my street.


It’s really quiet tonight.

I can hear the wind blowing way up high in the trees, I can hear the leaves, frosted with

ice, crackling like the blackened burning wood in my fireplace


my dog is snoring beside me, his paws are dancing and his tail is swishing dreamily,

happily beside him.


My old  black cat is watching his reflection

in the glass fireplace screen

with his ears pinned  against his head.


” Do you see a monster in there? ” I asked him.


My cat looks up at me.


” Do you see a monster in the flames? ” I asked as I took a sip of tea.


” It’s just the wind in the trees making the flames dance like that, ” my cat says ” it does

that on winter nights like these. But I don’t like it at all. Not one little bit.”


“Silly old cat,”  I said to myself.

“Why can’t he just enjoy himself for no reason at all

for once”


” It must be a cat thing. ” My dog said sleepily. ” It’s just a cat thing.”


And then my dog went back to sleep and my cat went back to watching his flames and I

went back  to waiting for it to snow.