It’s Caturday, so this story had to have cats in it. 🙂 I hope Mr. Nikita, The Opinionated Pussycat, enjoys it. I’m pretty sure Jane will.
If I forgot anybody, I’m sorry. I’ve had so many fur friends over the years, some of the names get lost. The love never does, though.
Dance by the Light of the Moon
by Marian Allen
It was by happenstance I was walking in the woods that mild May night.
I only meant to step out onto the porch to gaze at the star-filled rural sky, to bask in the silver glow of the full moon, and to breathe deeply of the lilac-flavored air. As soon as I opened the door, though, our Russian Blue cat, Katya, darted out and bulleted off the porch. She streaked into the woods in spite of my calling her.
A familiar wooden clatter pulled my attention nearer. Joe, half Black Lab, half Dalmatian, plunged up the porch steps and capered around me, tongue lolling. He ran back down the steps, then up, then down, in the classic Lassie-says-Timmie-fell-down-the-well fashion.
Naturally, I followed him.
He led me into the woods on Katya’s trail.
Not far in, a kittenish mew made me strain my eyes to the right. All I could see in the moon-cast shadows were one white whisker and two green eyes. That was all I needed. It was Al, our youngest daughter’s black half-Persian. I wasn’t surprised to see Tiffany, my calico, come from the opposite side of my path.
Joe led me to a clearing. Katya sat in the clearing, but she wasn’t alone. My companion animals joined the growing crowd, all of whom I recognized: Our next-door grandson’s little hound, Roamer Bob, and all his mother’s cats. There was Emma. There was Josie. There were Oscar, Victor, Hugo… I forgot the names of the rest. Joe touched noses with our dogs Rufus, Honeybun, Gal, Jack, Farfel, and the little terrier, Lizzie Diggumsmacks. Al and Tiffany joined Katya and the rest of our cats: Amanda, Sergeant Margeant, and Charlotte. My mother and grandparents’ dogs, Monsewer (French poodle, of course), Princess, Bootsie, and Socks barely tolerated the adoration of the cats, Tammy, Roger, Sweetie-Pie, and Ozzie.
As if at a signal they and not I could hear, the crowd broke into ranks: cats lining up on one side of the clearing, dogs on the other.
A deathly silence enshrouded us.
Then rose a chorus of owl-calls, counterpointed by frogs and toads, from the bass of bullfrogs to the soprano of spring peepers.
To the rhythms and tones of this unearthly music, the two lines of animals moved together, then apart, then interwove in a complex pattern I could almost understand and anticipate.
Faster they moved, and faster, eyes half-closed in delight, paws tapping the ground, tails waving and wagging, pink tongues showing between bright teeth in the sweetest of animal smiles as the full moon graced us all.
Too soon, the morning birds woke and cried an end to the celebration. One by one, the animals faded with the moonlight, leaving me alone with Roamer Bob, Ozzie, Sweetie-Pie, and Katya.
The dog and other cats bowed to one another and headed toward their homes. Katya blinked slowly at me, washed a paw, yawned, and trotted past me back the way we had come.
After one last look at the empty clearing, I followed.
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MY PROMPT TODAY: Cats, dogs, dance, happenstance