Hope is the thing with feathers
That perches in the soul,
And sings the tune without the words,
And never stops at all,
And sweetest in the gale is heard;
And sore must be the storm
That could abash the little bird
That kept so many warm.
I’ve heard it in the chillest land
And on the strangest sea;
Yet, never, in extremity,
It asked a crumb of me.
What always seems to get me through things is a message from my Grandmother’s cat. Yes, you read that right. You see, when I was a little girl I stayed with my Grandmother for awhile when my mother was ill. It was a difficult, wonderful time; I know you understand how that could be. I loved being there, but longed to be at home again – in my own room and with my mother near.
One night on this journey I woke, feeling sad and alone, sitting wrapped in a hand-made quilt in the middle of a big bed. The room was dark, but I could see the moonlight streaming in the window. It was so beautiful and peaceful in the misty sky over the water.
Grandmother’s kitty-cat was with me and I held him close as he purred and purred, nuzzling ever closer and whispering that love is real. His utter trust and sweetness reminded me that the tender tie between me and my mother was as strong as ever – even stronger in her absence and my confusion. The kitty-cat tethered me to my own life that night, as I saw my own capacity to love, even when aching so in its seeming absence. I held him a little closer too, and his fur was soon full of my tears; even his little face was wet, but he kept close to me and would not let go.
We fell asleep this way, awash in salty tears, but safe and warm on a chilly night with dreams of tomorrows in our heads.