Wednesday, May 29, 2024
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From the Archives: Early, and Late in the Year, 1988 and 2005

cat on afghan
Colorful Nap

Again, remembering my little feral kitty, here is a photo of her from about the age of two, when she’d gotten accustomed to living in the house but was still a little uneasy about appearing out “in public”, generally sleeping under tables and walking behind the furniture to pass from one room to another, occasionally sleeping in the sun on the floor.

A sunbeam, however, managed to draw her out and here I found her in the morning after breakfast, in January as I know by the quince blooming outside the window and my afghan on the back of the couch, warm in the winter sun; it’s a photo I’ve always treasured. It was the very first time I ever saw her in what she’d consider a vulnerable position, out in the open, simply enjoying her space. And because of her difficulties with her hind legs, getting up on the back of the couch was no small feat.

I know she realized I was there, and for a long moment she simply kept enjoying the sun on her fur, her eyes closed, breathing calm and regular. When her eyes opened, even though she actually trusted me and even slept with me, I knew my looking at her was disturbing, so as much as I wanted to enjoy the moment as long as she enjoyed the sunshine, I remember looking down, and backing around the corner. I remember she stayed there for a while, and visited the spot now and then.

And here she is “late in the year”, as the photo is titled, at age 19, in November 2005, and I love this photo just as much.

black and white photo of gray cat
Late in the Year

“Portrait of a senior kitty”…this is a favorite of my black and white photos. Aside from a strict adherence to twice-daily mealtimes, her one and only absolute necessity was a sunbath, preferrably al fresco, every day to help soothe the arthritis that had built in her somewhat hobbled hind legs.

I took this photo during the last warm day in November, just three months before she died. Some viewers have told me they have a difficult time piecing the image together because her features are distorted by age, her eyes set deep, her cheekbones sunken, nose slightly flattened by dehydration and ear tips curved as the skin on those extremities begins to wither, but I knew every hair, every feature.

Between those two photos, she filled my life with love and beauty, all through the year.

Moses was a very inspiring model; you’ll see many photos of her on The Creative Cat.

All images used on this site are copyrighted to Bernadette E. Kazmarski unless otherwise noted and may not be used without my written permission. Please ask if you are interested in using one in a print or internet publication. If you are interested in purchasing a print of this image or a product including this image, check my Etsy shop or Fine Art America profile to see if I have it available already. If you don’t find it there, visit Ordering Custom Artwork for more information on a custom greeting card, print or other item.


From health and welfare to rescue and adoption stories, advocacy and art, factual articles and fictional stories, "The Creative Cat" offers both visual and verbal education and entertainment about cats for people who love cats, pets and animals of all species.

2 thoughts on “From the Archives: Early, and Late in the Year, 1988 and 2005

  • Moses gave me hope that our (formerly) feral MacKenzie and I could tame each other. Now, almost 16 years later, she’s a friendly and much-loved member of the clowder. Each feral is different (they are CATS), but Kenzie showed me that even an adult feral, with time, patience and understanding, COULD become a happy house cat. She has touched my heart and I am a better person for having known her.

    • Amby, I knew nothing of feral cats then and for years it was so difficult with Moses that I could look but not touch, at least not with two hands. She taught me so much about patience, and about letting the cat be who they are, not who I want them to be; letting her sleep in the cat bed next to my chair, but not on my lap. In the very end, she thanked me for her dignity.


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