At the moment we are giving my mother’s two adult cats a new home — our place. We are gradually showing them what will be their “patch” and wonder what hunting opportunities there will be for them. I remembered what they did for my mother one Christmas, which inspired me at the time to write this poem:
My mother’s young cats are both ginger in hue, and go by the names Tiger One, Tiger Two.
The male one is called Tiger One just because his sister is smaller, more white on her paws.
But both are great hunters, and each day return from fetching their own tucker, canned stuff to spurn.
Things were no different on Mum’s Christmas Eve, until she got prezzies she’d hardly believe!
They brought her a dead mouse, a rabbit, a skink, and featherless hatchlings laid out by the sink.
I guess that the tigers decided it best to make their selections direct from the nest.
The last of the Christmas Eve prezzies they brought were two fluffy ducklings they’d carefully caught,
released for a terrified romp in the house, just as scared, but more noisy than any cute mouse.
Back there behind washing-machine they had sped. They sounded so hungry, but couldn’t be fed.
Mum hopped on the phone to the SPCA. “Can you help, though tomorrow is Christmas Day?”
Quite blithely they said “Cat or dog food will do. We’ll send our Bird Lady in a day, maybe two.”
The cupboard still yielded a leftover brand of dog-food: the ducklings considered this grand.
Mum turned off the lights, went to bed in dismay. “This wasn’t the plan for a nice Christmas Day.
I do love roast duck but I don’t want to wait a year ’til they’re fat, when I’ll be eighty-eight.”
Next day my mum took the two struggling guests, confined in her sweater, to look for their nest.
But down at the creek there was no sign of duck, so back to the laundry they went, out of luck.
The busy Bird Lady did not soon arrive, so after two days my mum gave them a drive.
Away to the lady the ducklings were goin’ — yes, off to be coddled until they were grown.
Arriving back home Mum commenced a good scrub of laundry walls, flooring, and back of the tub.
The Tigers said “Great, now it’s our place again.” Their next hunting trip shouldn’t now be in vain.
Those tigers, when small, shared my mum with a dog, so now they’ve gone hunting to fetch her… a frog!
= = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =