Coyote, Mouse, Pneumonia
A squeak interrupts my work at the computer. My work consists these days of something boring like printing out a shipping label or looking at a spreadsheet, or something mildly exhilarating like sending my album to friendly community radio stations.
The squeak is welcome because it allows me to turn in my chair and speak to my cat.
I know what the squeak means, but I stand up and walk into the other room to investigate anyway. The black cat holds an impossibly tiny grey mouse every so gingerly in his jaws. That was too easy. The cat does the customary thing and lets go of the wriggling mouse so he can chase it some more.
I walk into the kitchen and grab the largest plastic bin I can find in two seconds, and waltz over to Raven the Cat (who now holds the mouse in his mouth once more).
“Give me the mouse!” I hold the bin beneath the cat’s chin and expect him to run, but he simply drops the improbably tiny grey mouse into the bin and walks a few steps away. All of us stunned, I open the front door and walk out into the rain in my slippers. As I swiftly overturn the bin, the mouse drops into the garden.
I wait for a moment and watch the creature, chest heaving, gather himself and lick a tiny water droplet off of a blade of cerrated grass.
He's fine, I think, and I know he'll be back inside the house in no time. Mice always find their way home. But our ritual leaves the three of us invigorated - inebriated by adventure - and teeming with new stories to tell.