Okie is our orange tabby. His name has nothing to do with the Sooner State and Ethan is the only true Oklahoman in this house. When Okie adopted us in Texas, we dubbed him “O.K.” for “orange kitty” and that was all right with him. Since then, the name has shifted slightly. Okie shares the house with us, our finches, our two other cats (Scout and Ragget) and whatever wildlife temporarily comes in. Ethan and I rescue what we can. Here’s our latest adventure… involving a chipmunk and told in poem form:
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SPUNKY LITTLE MUNKY
Okie laid a dazed Chippy at my feet
and accepted a thank-you petting from
one of my hands while, with the other,
I pinched the chipmunk’s tail and
raised the little guy for inspection.
He was a handsome little critter.
Protected from our cats that night,
Chippy was due for release the next day.
I snapped a few photos before transferring
him to a wastebasket—or trying to.
With a flying leap, Chippy released himself…
to one room after another in our house.
At bedtime, I set out corn kernels and water
at his last known location.
By next morning,
all the food was gone. I replaced it with
a smorgasbord of popcorn, peanuts, lentils,
and sunflower seeds—a few of each;
it would be a shame not to keep
something so lively alive.
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Sometimes a poem is little more than a prose story with line breaks. It would be far harder, most times, to do a reverse rendition. Imagine trying to read an E. E. Cummings poem turned to paragraphs, for example. Ugh!
I just spotted Chippy on a cedar chest in a back bedroom. He seems happy with all the grains put out for him because, like the water, they are half gone. Even when I can’t see or hear him, the house seems a little more magical with his presence. That’s true of each of the other beings who live here… I feel blessed to share my life and home with each one . Ethan agrees. ♥ ~Jo
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Photo Credits: All by Jo Lightfoot