Nothing much has changed here except that I am working
a lot too much, it’s too hot outside (and we never did get our monsoon), and I think Kana throws up hairballs every other day because with her IBD she has difficulty passing the fur as she ought to.
Here she is in her new Cat Person chalet. I didn’t make a chalet last time because I thought Kana, my box queen, was too big. But SHE doesn’t think so.
For fun I thought I’d share an old poem with you. It was published in the journal Front Range, Issue 6, Spring 2011. It’s more narrative than usual for me, but I remember having fun writing it. After my daughter graduated from the University of Oklahoma (Boomer Sooner!), the gardener and I drove back to Arizona through Texas. So did daughter and son in daughter’s car. It was a fun family trip, and it was kind of relaxing that it was in two vehicles. Two years before her graduation, my daughter had performed in summer stock in Texas (Granbury and Galveston). So the last time I had been in Texas before daughter’s graduation was twice the summer she was there–once to Granbury and once to Galveston. The old theatre in Granbury has been the scene of John Wilkes Booth sightings. The idea is that he didn’t die when the history books tell us he did, but instead he went to Texas and got back into acting.
Booth Made Footprints in Texas after Escaping the Burning Barn
John Wilkes Booth didn’t die an assassin’s death
but like a schoolteacher in love with Shakespeare,
in his bed confessing with precise diction
though at that point not a soul believed him
because he acted the role of nobody
so authentically that his own frustrated soul
banned from acclaim for what was left for him,
returns to the scene of his last applause
and blesses the opera house actors
who can hear his boots slipping down the aisle.
My daughter and her castmates searched
in every shop, in the fly system
weights and pulleys, the rotting velvets and silks
wishing not to find him knowing if they found him
they would silence something important
something bigger than he was back in Washington,
or on national tour, in the middle
of the country, an opera house in Granbury
which is to be expected in a state
like Texas which magnifies everything
under its glass where you drive and drive
for days and are still in the same damn state,
a state of industrial stupor.
We aren’t lulled by the long grasses, the stretches
between. Count the oil derricks
vying with the windmills, the refineries,
and the ghost of boot prints in the dust
so enormous I worry that our kids
driving ahead of us on the Interstate
on the way home from college graduation
will disappear into one, swallowed
into the mirage as if they were never
part of us, leaving us searching for prints.
Do you like cats? Do you like veterans? Do you think a 95-year-old man should have a good birthday even during Covid? Then you might want to pull out your box of birthday cards and fill one out for the human grandfather of Bob Graves, the Writing Cat. Bob looks so much like my Mackie Man (RIP, 1998-2015).
This is what Bob sent in his Bobington Post yesterday:
55 responses to “Cats and Texas and Actors and Such”
Love the box. Never saw one like that. I like the rhythm of the poem too.
I had such trouble with Tiger eating that I tried this Cat Person food twice now. While it can’t be the food they eat everyday, it does seem to help to perk up the appetite of Tiger and Felix. Chicken and salmon/tuna are the best, they told me. Thank you re the poem!
I never heard of that brand. I looked it up and it’s expensive. The only picky one here is Gracie and she likes kibble better.
It’s expensive, so I’m glad we aren’t all on this full time haha. But it’s a godsend for these picky wickies. I thought Tiger was on her way outta here because she wouldn’t eat anything! But this helped perk up her appetite. It’s like human food–I mean, we could probably eat it.
My cats liked Weruva a lot but I don’t serve it often. I may try that with Gracie. I’d prefer if she ate more wet.
Perry also prefers kibble. So unhealthy. And Kana eats too much kibble, but it’s the kind she needs for her IBD. She is kicking my you know what with her IBD right now. Weruva Chikn Frikazee–however they spell it. That’s what my boys love.
Gracie gets crystals in her urine so she shouldn’t be on kibble but you can’t force her. She is very strong willed.
Cats are almost as stubborn as certain other family members ahem.
I love the poem, Luanne. I hope Bob gets a ton of cards. I suspect he will.
Thank you, John! I sure hope he does! If Bob the Writing Cat gets his personality from his grandpa then his grandpa must be pretty cool!
Seems that way.
I hope work eases a bit. I liked the poem–I never heard that story about Booth, but you had me thinking about Texas. You might remember that I lived in Dallas as a child–not a good fit. We never went to Galveston, and we used to go back to Philadelphia and the Jersey shore.
Kana looks comfy.
Thanks, Merril on both counts. Yes, she loves her chalet haha. I visited both Granbury and Galveston by myself because the gardener was sick in those days. I had a lot of fun exploring by myself and then seeing daughter when she was available. My hotel was right across the street from the ocean, and the breeze was so lovely. That was the year of Hurricane Ike, so I was there only a few weeks before so much of Galveston was destroyed. Granbury is closer to Dallas, and it’s so out in the middle of nowhere that this directionally challenged person was lost for hours.
I get lost and turned around getting out of an elevator, so. . .😏
Me too! After I leave a dr’s exam room, it’s hard to know whether to turn left or right!
I have that problem, too! 😀
We have to laugh at ourselves about it. Before someone else does!
I always enjoy your poems, Luanne. You are a word expert.
LOL, hardly a word expert–or at least not a grammar expert ;). Thank you, Anneli. Happy Monday . . . .
Grammar is not necessarily beautiful, but your choice of words is.
That’s a new-to-me story about Booth, Luanne. And a great poem! That Kana is precious. 🐈
Kana is a quite the “pill,” as my mom would say. It’s a hard road for her with her IBD, but she is a good girl. Thank you re the poem. Check out some of the Booth theories–fascinating. As a kid I read a biography about Booth and it FASCINATED ME. When you think about it, why were they publishing kids’ biographies of assassins, anyway? LOL
🤣🤣🤣Luanne, That last sentence really tickled me!! Thanks for the belly laugh!
Love the story, love the poem, love the picture of Kana and Bob the Writing Cat’s birthday card appeal! Sorting through my collection of cards right now…
Ah, LOVE that you’re finding a card for Bob, Sr. Thank you, Jennifer! I hope and yours are doing well!
I enjoyed the poem. (I do have an appreciation for narrative poetry.) I hadn’t heard that story about John Wilkes Booth. I’ve only been to Texas once, to Ingleside in the winter. It was grim, grim, grim.
What is Ingleside? I’ve never heard of that one. OK, I went and looked it up. Gosh, Google is nice to have. It’s near Corpus Christi and Port Aransas, where blogger and writer John Howell used to live. Not a pretty town, I take it? Thank you re the poem. Yes, once you start reading the theories about Booth you start to wonder!
I was to the Navy base at Ingeside to do a training. My colleague and I did a bit of exploring to check out the town. Pretty much dirt, tumblewoods, and shabby little buildings.
Nice poem. I’m writing a birthday note today to mail in. What fun!
Oh, thank you so much! That will be wonderful! It was fun to find out where Bob the Writing Cat gets his great personality from!
That is a really good poem
Thank you, Derrick!
Hi Luanne, Boomer Sooner and my alma mater have a real showdown every year during the State Fair in Texas – now I don’t even know if they’ll play this year…or if there’s even a State Fair.
When you were in Galveston, you were very close to my old stomping grounds in Grimes County, so you can say you knew at least one good thing that came from the state!! 🙂
Ugh, I hate flu shots. I had one yesterday and am sick from it. Same thing happened last time, which was about six years ago. The doctor didn’t want me to take it until now, but with Covid I was told to get the flu shot. So now I’m sick. But I wanted to say, the first vacation date daughter and her fiance took was to the State Fair and the Red River Rivalry game. I loved both Galveston and Granbury. Really charming places, but that was the year of Ike when Galveston’s coastline was decimated about a month or two after I visited. Granbury was adorable. I stayed in an old B&B right on the town square, across the square from the theatre. The drive home two years later was lots of fun, especially all the wonderful antique stores along the way. I bet those are all or mostly gone now because the internet has put those shops out of biz. But the western side of Texas is kind of depressing to drive through. It’s sort of like two different states ;).
Ugh, I’m sorry you’re sick from the flu shot, but I think it’s a good idea to get one this year. That’s so fun that your daughter and her fiance went to the Red River Rivalry game on their first vacation date!! Dallas always put on a great state fair!
I’m so glad you enjoyed your visit to East Texas – which is, I have to say, light years of difference from West Texas. I’m so glad I got the better side of the state, but don’t tell my West Texas cousins.
Take care of yourself and yours, my friend.
You, too, Sheila.
What a lovely post and poem! And guess what, I’m going to send Bob a card from Canada…
Thank you thank you thank you!!!!! I hope he is so excited when he gets all his cards!
I just popped it in the mail (I was thrilled to find an autumn themed card for him!)…
Thank you SOOOOOOOOOOOOOO very much!!!!!
I love your poem and pen-pal project!
Love Kana’s box, which we would dub her “A-frame Chalet”!
Great poem, I felt like I was in the car with you, driving for days across the “same damn state,” lol!!
That western side of Texas is really something. The eastern side is lovely, but they are two totally different places.
Kana loves her A-frame chalet because nobody can see her in there LOL!
Haha, truly a hideout!
Hope you will feel better soon, Luanne. We got the shot too, plus the pneumonia shot (#2 shot), and we felt the same way. Interesting poem; good memories.
I was over the worst of the symptoms in 24 hours, but my arm still hurts if that isn’t the weirdest thing. I didn’t even think of the pneumonia shot. That might be more than I could handle.
Great poem, Luanne! Traveling tandem is interesting. I did it with my mother once and we used walkie talkies to communicate. She was leading most of the way and almost got a speeding ticket for passing EVERYTHING on the road. I pulled in behind her and when the officer came to ask me why. I explained she was on oxygen and needed to stop at the next bathroom to pee. He let her off with a warning. Fun stuff that. Cats are such interesting creatures. I read all the Chicken Soup for the Soul books about dogs and cats. Love them.
I haven’t read those books. I bet they have really charming stories!!!
Oh my. Your mother was driving like a teenager hahaha! Good save on your part!
Loved the poem Luanne. If there’s a box, a cat will find a way of fitting in it 🙂 And I hope Bob gets lots of good wishes.
Yes, I should have known that about Kana and the box hah. Bob’s daughter says that she is getting lots of cards for him :)!
Great poem, thank you for posting it. =^..^=
Oh thank you so much! I love your cat face!