Creative commons picture from here
The glowing sun was making its rounds of my front porch. It had started with its dewy hand early in the morning on the front corner of the rough hewn wood. As it waned westward across the worn timber, it left warm patches of glorious sunspots across the surface.
I found myself rocking in rhythm to the sound of the buzz of afternoon insects, as they chanted their routine of flitting in and out, up an down, white noise which filled my ears. With the ebb and flow of the movement of my chair, my feet would dance in and out of the sun washed pools of light that lingered on the porch. The decadence of having my toes warmed, soon moved up my spine and into the rest of me, like a big hug wrapped cocoon like around my frame.
The cat from next door slowly made her way daintly through the overgrown grass of the side lawn, casting curious glances as my porch and my slow rocking back and forth. She would stop with tail poised and whiskers twitching to test the moment, and see if she should step further in or slink from whence she had come. After a couple flicks of her tail in time with her ears, she begins to carefully saunter the last few steps to reach the bottom ledge.
Cats are curious creatures. They often want to be near people because of what they offer them, but they don’t want to be indebited. it seems a forever tug and pull within them to figure out what might work best for them. I could see her eyeing me with her emerald green eyes, mesmerizing in her deep ebony face. Her purring entered the cadence of the bugs humming that I had previously been rocking in time with. The quizzical look on her face told me she was contemplating the sun spots at my feet, but wary of the personal sacrifice she would have to surrender in order to come that near to me.
We were not strangers to one another. She had made her way to our porch several times before, knowing that our veranda was full of beautiful places to lounge about quite comfortably in the sun she so craved. At her house, there were many little hands which sought to pick her up and place one more bow in her hair…and the quiet calm of just my husband and I seemed to sit well with her. In her younger days she had spent hours sitting on the porch swing intent on the birds who hovered so near feeding at our feeder. She had never leapt in the air to snatch one, to my knowledge, but she was kept quite busy making sure that nothing escaped her gaze.
I continued to move my chair in rhythm to the sound of nature’s symphony, one of the reasons I loved spending time on my porch. After I had a quick bite to eat for lunch, I would often slip out for a few moments of solitude before getting back at the task at hand. I brought a cup of tea with me, sipping at it as I let my feet propel me on a journey all their own. Spring had returned to us, and with it the blessing of the return of these moments to let my toes feel the fresh air and be warmed by the smiling face of the golden orb.
Out of the corner of my eye I saw movement. The neighborhood feline had made up her mind, and was making her way up the stairs very gingerly. I knew that any sudden movement would cause her to scamper away, thinking better of the risk it took for her to get close to me. The rhythm of the rocking chair was old news to her, something she associated with her time spent on the porch. She has been to see us so often that the porch swing not creaking in its aging way or the soft thump of the rocking chair would be something unfamiliar to her. I knew that soon I would be sharing my spot of sun that was so filling my soul with warm.
With a saucy glance my way and a stretch in a way only felines can, she settled herself in front of me and then laid down. She stretched her full length, gave a sign of contentment and then began to purr in earnest. Her purring became so loud that it almost drowned out the bugs around, the creaking of the swing or the thump of my chair. She was content and she wasn’t afraid to let the world know. While I had made my way to the porch for some solitude, I didn’t mind that this friend had decided to share some time with me enjoying the warming after such a cold winter.
I closed my eyes and continued to rock, the cocoon of the sun’s warmth still so snug around me, and with a sigh…I too settled back into a few more minutes of contentment.