“Do you know," Peter asked, "why swallows build in the eaves of houses? It is to listen to the stories.” ~ J.M. Barrie, Peter Pan


behind the tree and through the lights

my mother was so wrong.  once she took up with this cat she said no way could she any longer have a christmas tree, said this cat was different from all her others, said this one would never put up with a tree dangling lights and other pretties in her face.  and so for all the years they lived together there were no christmas trees, and i complained about it, i admit it; i wanted christmas to look like christmas.  i volunteered my house for the family christmas gathering and was always shushed, and she, being my mother, always won in our christmas tug of war.

after her death last year, i still believed her, and i didn't put up a tree, never mind that the cat had been with me since late spring.  we were still figuring things out about each other, and like i said, i figured mother knew best, at least about the tree.  but this year, another year down our together road, this cat & i know each other like old friends.  she goes outside on her own and, unlike my mother, i let her stay out after dark, though i still call her and worry her home, and even if takes 30 or 40 minutes, she always comes from wherever she is.  she has adjusted her feeding schedule to my workday, but she still wishes for someone here all the time; if i am late getting home, she sometimes wants not food, but just to be close to me.  be still my heart.

so this year, a tree.  with danglies and lights and everything.  with christmas cards standing on shelves behind that tree.  and of course, with a cat who has found a new place from which to watch the outside.  from an empty-ish spot on a shelf behind the tree. she hasn't yet even knocked over a card.  she snuggles against one and goes to sleep under blue lights.  i hope my mother can see her.


photos behind cat:
 bird on hand by robert langham
hearts on a string by susanna gordon



  1. This brought a little tear to my eye. I bet she can see her, and she is smiling, all the while scolding miss Skye for making her a liar. xo

  2. yes, i too believe she sees skye cat and smiles.
    isn't it funny/odd what we put up with for years, because
    we believed something not true? because we don't try it?
    in fondest.. tilda

  3. I think she can see, most definitely. Skye is such a love.

  4. Beautiful, funny, and it makes me wonder if she knew all along, and had some other secret reason for not wanting a tree. That sure is a beautiful cat.

  5. this touched my heart so sweet....thank you
    for reminding me
    that our assumptions
    are just that,
    that there is magic and mystery
    that is stronger.

  6. sweet how change occurs and blesses us all.

  7. I just wanted to pop by and wish you the happiest new year. May your 2013 be full of blessings, laughter, and happy surprises. Thank you for being a blog friend and a joyful part of my life.


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