When he’s not curled up on the sofa or on my pillow at night, Oscar’s been spending his time in a corner of the back yard. Sitting amongst the weeds that from a distance resemble a bed of green grass, he patiently stares down a gopher hole, his nose twitching as if he senses each slight movement the rodent makes below the earth.
I’m grateful that my feline is drawn like a magnet to this corner of the backyard, out of reach of a wandering coyote that’s been seen lurking around my neighborhood. A few days ago every house on our loop went on cat lockdown with the first sighting. We dragged our pussies inside to the safety of our homes, away from the perilous fangs of the hungry beast.
But this morning after the skies had cleared and strands of sunshine broke through the clouds, Oscar began screaming at the top of his lungs to be released. He yearned for the dampness of the soil, to stand guard once again over his domain. Every few hours I checked to make sure he hadn’t strayed out of the yard, but he was at his post, covertly gazing into the depths of his prey’s lair.
Sadly, I was not there to see him win the battle, to witness him catch his prey and carry it to the back door as his huge stomach swung back and forth with each step he made across the yard. Instead, when I opened the back door to let our geriatric darling dog out for a dose of sunshine the bloodied body of an enormous gopher laid motionless, still warm, and dead as a nit. ©