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Frenchie as a Metaphor

Frenchie as a Metaphor

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Published by Robin Rule
first essay in a collection of true life animal stories, hilarious, but heart-warming as well.
first essay in a collection of true life animal stories, hilarious, but heart-warming as well.

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Published by: Robin Rule on Oct 07, 2010
Copyright:Traditional Copyright: All rights reserved

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05/14/2011

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Frenchie as a Metaphor
By Robin Rule
So many times the cat called wolf. So many times, we were sure Frenchie,the feral cat was dying on his last legs, looking through slitted eyes at theGreat Hereafter, only to rise up at the Ziiip sound of the vacuum-sealed catfood tin. And this time no different. At the sound, he scrambled up the porchand ate like he hadn’t been here in three days, which was true.However this time, something was off. The wound on his leg that I had kepttriple anti-biotic ointment on, except these last three days, was dripping aclear-colored pus or lymph fluid, a drop a second. I cried out, as he scarfedthe food down . I tried twice to catch him and doctor him as usual, but hewas too quick. And now, he hasn’t shown up for dinner. I needed to catchhim and take him to the vet on our emergency credit card we promisedourselves we would never get, but the day our car fell apart, the mail boxheld an envelope for a year’s worth of $2,000 interest free. We didn’t knowif it were God Talking or Satan tempting. And now the year is up.In a week, the interest begins. It’s a sin. It says so right in that old Book of Laws: no usury, but I can’t get Mad Avenoo to listen. My husband said, wehave to do it, and I, exchanging roles with Adam, I didn’t argue very hardand accepted my husband’s decision. Shame on me. I didn’t hold enoughfaith in God. And now we will begin paying for my lack of faith.
 
Frenchie was old when we showed up six years ago, moving into a caboosewhere the abandoned house next door held twelve wild crazy starving catsthat only some would let us take care of. Of the many, so many died, andsome I cured, and some I had spayed, but not Frenchie. I couldn’t catch him.Now he’s showing his age even more. Ear mites, eye-nasal infection, thisunexplained leg wound. I am not ready to let go, but God’s Will isn’t alwaysmine. He’s old already I admit it, and I don’t know what a cat’s three scoreand ten are. I only know this cat has been like the boys of my earlymotherhood, when I raised my wild Peter Pan son’s friends as well as hisown self. There were a row of toothbrushes in the downstairs bathroom of akinship only late elementary school and junior high can knit together out of mismatched socks, floppy sweat shirts, jeans with cuffs, jeans without cuffs,and sweatshirts with hoods , eventually to be called “Hoodies”. Cerealbowls, gallons of milk, Top Raman eaten raw secretly under the covers of asleeping bag and sometimes thrown up from lack of moisture, homemadecookies, fruit leather, gallons of frozen homemade apple juice taken out of the freezer faster than I expected. Heartbreak, neglectful mothers, notneglected mothers: but misunderstanding mothers; angry fathers, too manysiblings: all this playing out in a needing paint, new wallpaper, needingsanded wood floors in the 14 room Victorian where I had learned to stashfutons, air mattresses, plain thick blankets, sleeping bags and pillows in thewardrobe closets and hidden away storage corners where boys just wanted towanted to curl up in the couch corner with a grandma quilt and watchmovies about life as perfect family happiness or a shoot ‘em up that I tried

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1 hundred reads
Barbara Alfaro added this note
Wonderful blend of humor and sadness. Loved "We didn't know if it were God talking or Satan tempting."
Carl F Maulbeck added this note
"Heartbreak, neglectful mothers, not neglected mothers: but misunderstanding mothers; angry fathers, too many siblings" - offset by heart felt which heals all wounds. - great stuff Robin.
Daniel Essman added this note
...the heartbreak...always the good acts, always the heartbreak...a beautiful beat-conscious rapadap memoir and allegory straight out of paul's letter to corinthians...without love, there's nothing...
Adelaide Dupont added this note
Oh, Frenchie! His wounds are well-known to all of us.
7BILLIONHUMANBEING added this note
terrific great pet story well read emotional hurt read

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