Supreme Ruler of the Universe
When we look back on this post we’ll wonder why we didn’t do anything to stop it — or perhaps it was inevitable
Newton is Jenn’s cat. He’s been through many moves in his life — I couldn’t say how many, Jenn would know — heck, in the last couple of years that Jenn and I have been together, we’ve moved three times. So I suppose that’s why he turned to writing poetry.
Yes, Newton is a poet. Not only does he have a book, but he also has an agent, and one day you’ll be able to buy his book and regale yourself in his clever turns of verse.
Allow me to introduce you to the ‘Poetry Cat’ I know as Newton MacLean.
It took Newton several years before he accepted me, and by “accepted me,” I mean before he stopped wanting to murder me in my sleep. He’s a particular cat. You simply do not pet Newton. You need to wait for him to come to you before you don’t pet him. Not petting him is the secret to petting him. Newton is a philosopher-king.
“To bear and not to own; to act and not lay claim; to do the work and let it go: for just letting it go is what makes it stay.” ― Lao Tzu
In “Not Doing,” I have built a bond with Newton, mainly because 50% of my time is spent working from my “Studio in Da’ Burbs.” I wake up and get a cup of coffee, Newton gets a tiny bit of milk. I refill my coffee, Newton gets his crunchy food refilled with fresh crunchy food because old crunchy food is the worst. Around 10 AM, Newton will kill one of his stuffed toys and bring it down to the studio to be praised for his incredible hunting prowess. 11 AM means fresh water directly from the downstairs bathroom tap. At noon he will come down for seven belly rubs (nine if he’s feeling benevolent), and if it’s nice out, he’ll then want to go out to the backyard. 1 PM he has his nap on our bed, the blinds should be open so he can have (or not have, as he wishes) a sunbeam to stretch out in. 4 PM is supper time, and I need to sing the “Supper Time” song (the lyrics must reflect the adventures of the day) — if the squishy food is in the fridge it needs to be warmed slightly in the microwave and then fluffed up, but if it’s a new can he likes to choose his own flavour. When we go to bed in the evening, he joins us, points his toes to the sky, and gives himself a bath.
I have accidentally added some complexity to this routine. You see, the backyard at our new house is not as glorious as the backyard in our old house. Our new place has decks and levels and more decks, but it doesn’t have bushes or trees for Newton to lurk under like our old place. The front yard in our new place has bushes and a clear view of “Squirrel Island,” the bird feeders, and Scenic Acres Boulevard (a fairly busy road featuring a wide variety of vehicles and people), so naturally, one day I let him out on an escorted day-pass to explore.
This was a mistake.
The “Front Yard” is his new favourite place. On the one hand, I’m thrilled that he is seeing more and more of the world, but on the other hand, I wonder, “where does this end?” If left unchecked, I fear that Newton will take over “Squirrel Island,” quickly become the new Mayor of Calgary (but only for one term) before he becomes Premier, followed by Prime Minister, and sooner than later the Ruler of the World, followed quickly by Emperor of the Universe.
I really do hate to limit his potential (I feel he’d do a better job than most wielding Supreme Executive Power), so for now, I’ll just stand on the front step and watch him watching the world.
I know he’s making plans, and should he start making his way to “Squirrel Island” to begin his reign, I will gently encourage him back into the house, close the door, and be ready in five minutes to do it again. Or refresh his food dish, or turn on the bathroom tap, or adjust his favourite blanket, or sing him the “Supreme Emperor Newton” song.
We should be thankful he’s used poetry as a creative outlet as opposed to world domination, so please encourage him and buy his book when it’s available.