Sunday, February 21, 2010

A Cat called Henry

 I have just finished knitting 3 more barn cats and they are all sitting on my desk, here in my craft room.

 To make them seem just a little more real, I have decided to tell a story about each of them and so tonight I will introduce you to Henry.

 Now Henry was born  to a mother cat named Sarah. She was only a  year old when she gave birth to a litter of 5  kittens. Henry was  the only male and was a  rather ugly little fellow. The human fussed over Sarah and  seemed to feel sorry for her as she was so young and helpless with this her first experience at having so many mouths to feed.  She kept her warm  in a cardboard box filled with a soft blanket and little by little the young mother cat regained her strength. The kittens  grew  as well and entertained their human owner.

Sarah was a good mother and lovingly protected her babies.   The weeks passed by quickly and Henry showed signs of being rather  slow and afraid to move away  from his mother. One day as they were all nestled in close to their Mom, a stranger came to the house. She smiled and gently picked up Annie his sister and  cuddled her. He never seen Annie again and he missed her. He knew his Mom did as well  because  she went from room to room looking for her crying.  Only a few days later, another lady came to the house with her  two daughters. The little girls laughed and hugged each of the kittens including Henry, but Bess and  Laura never came back. They had been taken by the children. Again  Henry watched his Mom travel throughout the house  crying for her babies. She never did find them and Henry and Sue  snuggled even closer to their Mom, sharing their loss.

One day their owner took sick and  was taken away. She never returned and the house became very silent.  Another stranger came over to feed them and  they  watched as she sat and cried  in the big blue chair night after night. In time Henry, his sister and Mom were put into a cage and taken to a place called a shelter. He never seen his Mom and Sue ever again.   Henry was lonely and missed his Mom. He was scared and the metal cages made him shiver and  hiss  when humans approached him.   Time passed and Henry grew used to the isolation of loneliness.  He seen other cats brought in and then see them leave in the arms of loving owners.. but no  one ever looked at him. No one ever wanted to pick him up and in time he  lost his will to live. His became sick and  gave up eating. He no longer moved around in his cage . He  slept and dreamed of his Mom  and running and playing with his sisters.  It was only then that his tail twitched.

The caretakers had been watching him and he heard them say that  there was no hope for him. No one wanted him and now he was sick. They took him out of his cage and took him into another room and laid him on a table. Thinking that he was not aware what was happening,  they  walked away and shut the door intending to let the vet give him a lethal shot to put him out of his misery.

   As Henry lay there, he felt a cool breeze.  He slowly lifted his head  and felt  a whiff of  freedom. A  window was open and he knew that he had to use the last of his strength and go toward those unfamiliar sounds and smells.


Henry found his way to the old barn out behind Maggie's Raggedy Inn.  His instinct  kicked in and gave him the necessary courage and skills to fight his way back to health.  He learned to catch flies and  finally caught a small mouse which helped him develop his hunting skills.  Over the next two weeks, he travelled to the outskirts of  the city to find himself   in front of  that old barn.  Here he found other cats like him who had taken up living in the many corners of the isolated  old grey building.  Here he found hope and friendship. He shared an upstairs window with Tess, a wise old  cat who told him about life and how to make it in the big world. He shared his story and she purred with understanding, just like his mother had done. At night he lay close beside her and listened to wind blow through the old rafters. He gradually let go of his fears and knew that his  life ahead would soon be filled with the  possibility of maybe one day finding a home with humans who would love him as they had loved him and  his family a long time ago.




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