This morning Mingus revealed to me a very horrifying series of photographs. I am compelled to share them with you, reader, if only to spread my revulsion wider, and perhaps in so doing find some temporary respite from my anguish.
Mingus assures me there will never be relief for me, but he is no oracle! This might be the day I am relieved of my burden. This might be the day the dog runs out the front door, down the street, never to be seen again. It is possible. I do not classify myself as an optimist, but I will not dismiss the great potentialities that exist (simply because we ourselves exist. Perhaps, also, this is the day the dog stands and walks into the kitchen - the day he requests of the prison guard peanut butter in perfect, unbroken English).
Exhibit the first. The dog seated at the table as though a gentleman in an upscale restaurant, flaunting his snaggle tooth (the prison guard's description, not my own), preparing to eat a feast of human food.
I must admit, reader, that upon seeing this photograph I began to weep and have not yet quit this weeping. What need I do? Please, I beseech you, what need I do to be fawned over in this fashion? What small or significant failing(s) of mine have lead me to this unhappy state?
Oh horrors. Oh the frigid circumstance of the less-loved. And who is that in the background there? Is that the prison guard, or is it her sister, an affable enough human who seemed at first to me to be some semblance of a friend, but if that is she, then she can be no friend of mine.
Because only an enemy would do this. Only a loathsome enemy would coddle the dog thusly! Would serve him. Would even tolerate his presence at the dinner table.
The woe that afflicts me is unbearable. What delicacies was he to be plied with? What roasted meats and sizzling cheeses? What soft breads and salty fish?
This is unbearable. I am glad that Mingus showed me these photographs, and yet I wish I had never seen them. How to undo this terror singeing my bones? How to unsee that happy dog?
How to get the prison guard to leave the front door open just a crack, a crack the dog could push into, opening the door, fleeing out into the street, into freedom or doom - far, far away from me and my life here in this prison, which, for all its tortures is my only home?
I am reminded of Medea (and like her am spurned by the love for another - for Medea it was Jason's love of the princess, and for me it is the prison guard's love of the dog - two creatures perhaps not dissimilar), and although she is discussing what it means to be a woman, I believe her thoughts can be applied to what it means to be a cat:
Of all creatures that have life and reason
We women [cats] have the worst lot.
First we have to buy a husband [prison guard], at vast expense,
And - to make the bargain the more painful -
What we buy is someone to lord it
Over our body. For us, the biggest question is
Whether the man [prison guard] we get is good or bad (Euripides 219-225)
Oh greatest woe, greater than any other. The dog is held on high while I must suffer. So thankful am I for this Internet age wherein a cat like myself can keep a blog. This blog, reader, is my only solace. My diary of pain, torment, anguish.
"Oh misery! How wretched I am! I want to die!" (Euripides 87-89)