Thursday, March 10, 2011

It's Luco's Birthday!

This year I am turning 10. I think. It may be that I am turning 11. I am not sure. My mother left me when I was very young (she got out and ran away after one of the prison guard's many moves), and no one ever bothered to mark the truth. My birthday is perhaps in March, but maybe it was in February.

It is rather ridiculous that I do not know when I was born, as I was born on the prison guard's screened in front patio. Her stray cat had a litter of five, within which I found myself. It was an unfortunate incident; she had been about to get the stray cat, my mother, a cat she named Hiromi, spayed, but Hiromi went into heat and was subsequently repeatedly and brutally raped by myriad tom cats.

Here I am in a pile with my siblings. There were five of us born that day; two girls and three boys. The girls were all white, and the three boys were an orange cat, a backwards me, that is, a black cat with white marks, and me. I am toward the back there. I can nearly make myself out in this photograph.

It was quite a comfortable pile of bodies and limbs and purring, however. I truly enjoyed being pressed against my family. I do not believe I have felt such an intense warmth since then.

And in this picture I am being held by the prison guard's husband (although he was not her husband at that time). I cannot imagine allowing myself to be held in this manner now. It would fill me with a pulsing rage and my only alternative would be to lash out, hissing, biting.

I was gentler as a kitten, I suppose. Happier. 

And this picture provides further evidence of that ease, that happiness. Here I lie with my cretinous roommate, Fremlin. I would never suffer this to happen now. Ever.

Maybe I was sweeter in kittenhood because I had not yet gone through the suffering that would come to define me. I had not yet met the horrible dog that I had to guard against, the horrible dog several years ago who bit my tail. I had not yet realized that for every moment of love and happiness, we needs must experience  agony and torment tenfold. 

Regardless. Why does the prison guard forget my birthday? I will forgive her the day, but this woman does not remember the year.

I suppose I will just have to sing to myself. By myself.

Happy birthday to me. Happy birthday to me. Happy birthday, dear Luco. Happy birthday to me.


  1. Happy birthday, Luco. I hope at least the prison guards make you a mouse cake in recognition.

  2. Happy Birthday, Luco! I think you are a great cat philosopher.

    Have you ever read Adam's Task by Vicki Hearne? Or the great naming poem of the same title by John Hollander? What would you be called, O cat, if you could choose another term than "cat"?

  3. Dear Luco,

    Here is a late birthday present: a song about a cat who lives with a scholar:

    I hope you like it.

  4. J-Low,

    Thanks for the link. Just started reading Adam's Task and am very much enjoying it so far.

  5. Owww so cute I celebrate my cat's birthday too. His my best friend.