Morning in the Country

Sunrise glow: I’m not really working.
Throw a cup of scratch to the chickens,
chase dogs down the brown road. Water froze
overnight so I haul buckets inside to thaw.

Bullheaded dog stretches and groans.
He becomes a statue in the sun, standing
guard for his siblings racing the hills.
Tail whipping only when I turn to him
and smile. My hands might crack in this cold.

Mountains rise to form the edge of my town,
boasting new snow. Did they push slowly
into the clouds or spring forth from crust,
violent? A baby grows slowly then erupts, too.
Grooves are etched deeper around my eyes
but these mountains are still young.

kittens

cast out
like a litter of unwanted
kittens in cardboard
shivering, drenched

mewling from tiny
faces, pink noses scrunch
in effort at the clawing
fruitless on the walls
insurmountable

rain pounding their
delicate ears, they huddle
together as it
becomes dark, quaking
missing
their mother

they claw through me
forcing me to my knees
drawing sobs from deep
in my chest
i miss
my mother

Thoughts on Synchronicity

Do you believe that two related events can happen, close together, with no discernible reason as an explanation?

This weekend I was thinking a lot about my old cat, who died last year. I was feeling guilty about the way I treated him when I was much younger.
I was too rough, insensitive. I hurt him sometimes. I didn’t treat him well.
I grew out of that behavior as I aged. But still I carry the shame.
How could I reconcile this with being such an animal lover?
It had been on my mind all weekend.

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I hope you have forgiven me. ❤

On Sunday, I spread out my blanket in my yard in a patch of sunshine and nestled in for some reading.
Suddenly, a neighbor’s cat walked over to the blanket and curled up next to me.
This cat has never approached me in my yard before, although other neighborhood cats have many times.
In fact, I don’t see this cat very often.
He looked up at me, meowed. He had the very same tabby colors and fur patterns as my old cat.

Could this be a message? I wondered. I peered into his face.
Why did he approach me, right at that particular time when I was carrying so much guilt?
How could these events have coincided so perfectly?
Am I forgiven? I asked him.
I’m not sure. Am I being superstitious? Is that a bad thing?

And then, today, my professor in class gives us a lecture on synchronicity. When related events happen together for no obvious reason… it’s baffling.
When I see these things for myself, I begin to wonder.

Is the the Universe trying to tell us something?
Is is just a coincidence, to be brushed off or ignored or rationalized away?
What do you all think? Have you had experiences with this?

Keep Your Hope

My small spirits:
the animals, the young children
who do not yet know the word oppression.

Sweet innocence, utter curiosity,
brave and trusting hearts.
Those sunny faces and bright eyes
don’t yet know depression.

They don’t need to know.
Please God, don’t show them.

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Believe in all the good things,
the magic that turns leaves red and gold
and morphs clouds into dragons.

Watch the sky for rain; laugh hard
when someone sneezes.
You can find delight in anything.

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Keep your dreams close, little ones.

Hold onto joy and travel through this world
slowly, and with those open eyes
that give me such hope.

Feline Lovin’

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Hey whisker tickler, come spread your cheer
at my doorstep in the early sun.
Bring me your unconditional love, in exchange
for just one long head rub.
Your frantic purring and meowl-ing shall not go
unnoticed on my porch.

No, I will oblige your cries,
and you’ve never asked for more.
Please stop by soon, Miss Pouncing Paws,
although you do live right next door.

My Guinea Pigs

I love having pets. Even though at times I can feel tied down by them, my little piggies give me invaluable joy and company on a day-to-day basis.
I love when they start squealing upon hearing my footsteps coming up the stairs to my room (though, admittedly, they are only thinking of food).

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Baby Poppyseed.

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Matilda and Poppy as young ‘uns.

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Pigs, present day (ish). They adore their comfy fleece bedding.

I spend a lot of time alone, or at least intentionally not interacting with people. This is due both to my introverted nature (normal, for me) and to my tendency to isolate myself (unhealthy). But something about spending time with animals is so unlike spending time with other humans. I don’t feel awkward, insecure, or forced when I’m trying to make a connection with them. It feels easy, comforting, and natural.

And for some reason, I also have similar feelings when I interact with young children. Perhaps it’s because they haven’t quite picked up on social cues, norms, and they don’t have reservations about certain things. I can be silly around them, and there’s no judgement or eye-rolling. They don’t tell me I’m not cool. I listen to them, and they listen to me (usually). Young children are mean only in the sense that they speak honestly, are self-interested, and don’t have the same sense of what’s inappropriate as older people.

 It’s taken me a while to learn these things about myself. Now I know that I feel more complete when I spend time with animals and kids.
Next step: How to incorporate this into my career and/or “adult” life…