a flurry of colour
freed, the crimson rosella
doesn’t look back
Sometimes, when I was a kid, birds would hit the side of our home and the cat would rush out there to catch it while it was stunned. So, every time we heard that thud, it was a race between me and the cat to see who could get there first — me to save the bird or the cat to eat it. Three times I got there just after the cat and prized her jaws apart, the bird flying free unharmed. But the fourth time, the cat clamped her jaws down on the bird, killing it instantly. I was angry with the cat and took the bird away anyhow. The cat just scowled.
We lived in remote North Queensland. I don’t know which feral cat she was making her pregnant, but maybe one we were responsible for.
box under the bed
the labouring cat
begins to purr
of a cat’s tongue
Once she brought a wood duck up from the house-dam, a good kilometre away. It was bigger than her. She dragged it in for her kittens not yet three days old. There lay the duck, its feathers gleaming in the shadows of her nest while the kittens peered through half-opened eyes. She also brought in a goanna for them, huge and leathery and very much alive, in fact, still perfect because she couldn’t break its skin. Eventually it got away, running up the nearest tree to the outermost branch, the cat after it, both dropping to the ground, and away through the bush. She didn’t come back with it, so I suppose it won.
She took to having broods of kittens away down the paddock in some hollow log, but I was a tenacious child and would stalk her, a few more metres each day. She would change direction when she noticed me. But eventually I would find them and bring them back to the house.
She may have hated me, that cat.
flicking her tail
in a pink doll’s dress
Eventually she brought dingo poison back and vomited it up, her latest batch of kittens succumbing also, two older male cats locked away until it was all over. And that was the end of our addition to the feral cat population.
at Ligo Haibun Challenge, which, this week is using two of my images. I was going to write something entirely different, but this is what came out. Maybe another day.