A STORY OF LONG AGO AND FAR AWAY, REMEMBERING THE PAST, AND JOAN JACKSON~!
OMG here comes another story of long ago and far away, with cats~! One located a world that no longer exist, but I lived it, and need to write it down, even if I must do it in rhyme.
I was in my young, single, “cool cat” years, and on a project way up north of Lesser Slave Lake, Alberta, Canada. As per usual in such isolated projects we worked six weeks, of seven days straight, then took two weeks off. This was a beautiful, yet at times terrible place, where the mosquitoes ate you up while you sloshed around in muskeg knee deep in the summer, and you froze your balls off in the winter, which was the only time the bottom did not fall out from under you. Beautiful, fantastic wild life and native Indian trappers being the only life other than ours in these wild “boonies”.
My main office and jumping off place was in Ft McLeod, in the southern part of Alberta Provence, and there it happened that I had a lady friend who lived and taught the first through sixth grade at a tiny country school, north west of Ft McLeod, in the beautiful foot hills of the Northern Rocky Mountains, and near the border with British Colombia.
This was a fantastic place to spend time off; however in the winter much of it was impassible. So the isolated ranchers had this little country schoolhouse with a teacherage and a horse born, where she taught. In the winter horse power was the main way to get around. I remember that she only had about 12 or 13 students ranging in age from six to about twelve. It was interesting to help her with her job. So this is the setting of my poem. It is mostly true and I hope you enjoy~!
THAT MEAN OLD FERAL CAT
You probably know from what you see,
I like the disposition between cats and me,
they are lovable and pet-able when they desire,
but at other times their mood can be most dire.
And at those times they may try to flee.
It is the same with me too you see,
there are times when I too may flee,
if I am not in the mood to be a friend
unhappy things, unfortunately, I may end.
Why bother with something not liked by me !
But let me tell you a story about a cat,
far north, from the nearest town 30 miles flat.
I had a friend who went there to teach
in a little country school far out of reach.
Only horse and sled could get to that~!
It had only one room, and just 12 kids,
a tiny teacherage , which was was on the skids,
an old cast iron wood stove sitting in a niche,
barely kept us from freezing, if too far from reach.
So we sat, and tried to feed that fire up to the lid.
That cat and me, with my friend, a beautiful girl.
Would wrap our selves to that frozen swirl.
And keeping worm, we tried to be like those
cozy Eskimos kissing, with frozen nose,
that is what kept us warm in that frigid world.
Now back to that barn cat, he was part feral,
she had rescued him to that warmer world.
But he did not like me, and let me know,
that he rathered that I lived out in the snow.
And this is where he tried to make me go.
When she sat across from me, in the room,
he would place his self centered, oh so soon,
defying my presents to be close to her,
with a low growl, and raised back fir.
He would let me know, I should not stir.
That damn cat won out, and soon she did send
me packing, my relationship with her came to an end,
well he was a major part of this long cold story,
but I had already found another, to my glory,
a warmer house sans-cat, where time I could spend.
Not a happy ending~!
to my true story.
That poor cat froze to death years ago,
when another lover locked him out in the snow.
by next winter I had transferred
to Colombia, South America.
but we kept in touch
for many the years.
And Joan passed away, only last year,
a sad old maid, all alone,
in a Teachers retirement home~!
that did not allow cats I fear.