Sweet Dreams, Little One

So, I was driving to work this morning. Turned right on 9th. Saw a small lump of something on the double yellow lines in front of the Assembly of God Church. Looked like a child’s t-shirt. Got closer to see that it was a tiny dead kitten.

Oh! You poor sweetie!

A pang in my chest. Hot tears rush and overflow.

I continue driving. Right on South St. Poor sweet kitten. Left on Strong Blvd. Cars are going to try to avoid the work trucks that are parked on the side of the road on 9th. They’re going to have to veer over the double yellow lines a bit. I realize I am going to have to drive past that sweet innocent thing on my way home. It will be messy though. Because drivers won’t have realized that a precious kitten will be under their wheel until it’s too late.

Hot tears still flowing.

I’m a few blocks from work, but I turn around and go back.

What am I going to do? What in the world am I going to do?

I have a hand towel in the back seat of my truck. Hurry up, I breathe to the white Le Sabre in front of me. I get closer to the wee lump in the road. Put on my flashers and pull to the bike lane and stop. I don’t really care who gets mad or honks. Fluffy towel in my hands, I walk to the middle of the road. There’s no blood next to her. It’s as if she fell asleep in the middle of the road.

I cover her with the towel and gently pick her up. She’s so limp and soft. Light grey and white. Long tufts of white coming out of her ears. She’s so pretty and cute and sweet. She looks like a long hair. Can’t be more than four or five weeks. Oh! She’s so little!

I place her on the floorboard of the passenger side of the truck, climb in, and go home.

Shelly hasn’t left yet for work. We wrap her in the towel better and put her in a Braum’s paper bag. I hate to say this, but we put her in the garbage. The trash will run tomorrow and she’ll be taken away.

I feel better that I didn’t leave her in the road.

The day is a day. I’m sluggish and heavy and unmotivated.

Once I’m home, Shelly and I are watching West Wing. I love this show. This is my 4th time to watch the series. It makes me laugh and cry and feel empowered to be a human being.

Today is Finn and Sawyer’s, two of our six rescued cats, birthdays. Finn, grey and white fur that’s as soft as a rabbit. Sawyer, black and white and scared of his own shadow. They’re two years old, we think, today. Finn gets in my lap every night and cuddles with me. Every single night. I love him so much. I post pictures of them on Facebook for their birthday.

When I am on Facebook posting their pictures, I see the news about the shooting in Tulsa. God, another one! Lord, are you even paying attention?!

I look at Finn’s face, his little grey spot just under his chin.

Hot tears rush and overflow. I can’t stop crying.

Shelly asks what’s wrong. I can’t have that sweet, precious little kitten be collected into the huge garbage truck tomorrow. I just can’t. And I can’t stop crying.

It’s late now. It’s dark. We get up, take her in her little bag out of the blue bin, already at the street for tomorrow’s pick up, We get a little trowel and go to the back corner of the yard and dig a hole. The ground is soft, like clay. I place her inside the bag into the hole and cover her. Shelly places a concrete brick that has colored marbles in a pretty design on top of the little grave.

I can’t stop crying. This little, beautiful kitten. Gone. So sweet.

I can’t control what’s happening in the world. Aftermath of COVID. The Ukraine. Black and Indigenous Women screaming oppression by White Supremacy as Roe v. Wade will be overturned soon. And the Supreme Court stating that we need more White babies to adopt out. White Man’s fear of diminishment. Don’t Say Gay bills and anti-LGBT+ rules being signed into law as fast as an assault rifle expels bullets. Uvalde. Cops and Abbott blaming everything and everyone except the thing that we have control over. And Tulsa tonight. Today is June 1, the first day of Pride Month. I’m terrified of the rage and helplessness infecting those who need a scapegoat, who need someone to blame, who need to feel not diminished.

I can’t control any of it, and I don’t know what to do with the rage and the fear and the shame that I feel. I’m tired of looking like I have all my shit together. I don’t! I want to rage at the politicians who really don’t give a shit about anything, who talk out of both sides of their mouths for the sake of campaign finances and support. I’m angry that our leadership is quiet and not saying anything about ANYTHING! Women are afraid and angry. LGBT+ are afraid and angry. Children are afraid but are too innocent to be angry…yet. And you, I see you, say nothing! Stay in the middle where it’s safe and easy. Don’t make anyone uncomfortable. Don’t actually speak a truth that might be challenged. Stay in your hole while those who look to you for strength and guidance and leadership feel more and more and more invisible.

I can’t control what is happening in the world. I can’t control any of it.

But I buried a tiny, precious, beautiful kitten tonight.

Hot tears continue to flow.

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