Tuesday, January 18, 2011

The Pre-Dawn Shadow

When I walk to the chicken shed in the morning, I hear my breathing and my boots crushing the snow. I don't hear Trick the Cat padding beside me. When I open the chicken house door, Trick steps inside, walks near the walls and hops onto the roost. A few hens wake and grumble, but they don't get up. They're used to the cat's pre-dawn hunt. I go to the next chicken shed, and the cat follows. I can barely make out his figure in the darkness. As I give the hens their breakfast, he's sometimes catches his -- a mouse or sparrow. I am grateful for his prowess, just like he appreciates me for opening doors and stirring up his prey.

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