Sunday, November 30, 2008

This week I have been mostly eating....

a shoe
some coal
some sand
a loaf of bread (brown)
a photograph of Sky (the big black lurcher dog)
a frisbee (blue)
a pen (black ink)
a loaf of bread (multi seed)
another pen (blue ink)
rabbit poo
horse poo
and growing my tail, long, long, long.

Saturday, November 29, 2008


This morning we cats stayed home, curled in warm places. Outside the leaves were crisp white with lace edges of ice. While the light was still just coming in to the day She took the dogs, leaving a small blast of cold as the door swung shut, then away they walked, up from the beach towards the headland. There they saw a silver pony and the blue blue sea.

At St Davids Head they rested a while. Rosie ran circles over the close cropped green, following her nose as she read new messages. Then she lay down in the circle of stones where once an ancient house had stood. As she dozed she caught a scent from long ago, from across time, of the dogs who had rested here centuries before when there were walls and a roof and a fire burned and smoke drifted up and out to sea through a smoke hole. And she dreamed of wolves.

Then the morning light cut through the clouds, emerald sharp, and once again the dogs ran, through the circles and on to the high rocks above the silver sea.

Friday, November 28, 2008


I am the dog that lives in the waterworld at the end of the rainbow.

My cat likes to hide in boxes

In the absence of a suitable tea plate Maurice chose a comfortable box in which to rest.

Monday, November 24, 2008


Tonight we watched as a falling star ripped a bright tear in the velvet fabric of the night, and we wondered, how does the star cat manage, each night, to throw the stars up into the sky so that they always land in the same patterns? The rip in the darkness was no sooner there than mended. Only the memory of the bright arc remained. This is what life is like.

Sunlight, emerald moss and standing stones

To sweep away the dust of dreams disturbed we walked in the early morning sunshine.

The farmyard was thick mud, but we danced through the puddles in ginger brightness. In the green lane that leads to the hill top we made a daisy chain of cats.

Over the hill we walked in the wild wind, wolf and cat together. Islands of sunlight shone through thick cloud and a cold wind bent our ears back.

We rested in sheltered green places, emerald and ginger.

And on the Witness Stone on the top of the hill Elmo was splendid in sunshine.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Going on

Maurice: "She's been writing on our blog."
Elmo:" Yes. So I see."
Maurice:" Goes on a bit doesn't She."


This week I have been mostly growing until I fit in the dog basket and eating
a shoe
some paper
a cork
a plastic bottle
a mouse that sang
a book with writing in
a pen
a pencil
a toilet roll
a feather duster
some grass
a stick
rabbit poo
sheep poo
horse poo
a cuddley toy
a basket
and lots of things they haven't found yet.

Why we choose to share our lives with dogs

I got my first dog the week that my husband moved out because things had become so painful that we could no longer live together. The cottage I live in is remote and I wanted and needed a guard dog, a companion when the children were with their dad , and something to get me out of the house, moving around. I was heart sick and heart sore and at Llanelli dogs home struck lucky when the first dog I saw had liquid eyes of kindness.
Bella was about a year old, and up for a good walk and walk we did. I couldn’t sit down and paint. There was too much trouble in mind and only in movement and in being outside could I find any measure of peace. She was kind and good at barking at strangers, wonderful with the children who were small at the time.
I loved to lie next to her and listen to her heart beat, loved the warmth of her and the weight of her when she curled on the bed next to me like a wolf guardian. The cats liked her too.
I have Bella to thank for meeting Robin too. He was staying at a friend’s house with his dog, Larry, and Bella took to both of them, so the day after we met we went for a long long walk along the coast together, dogs running here and there, conversation weaving in and out. We have been walking, mostly in step, ever since.
One dog is wonderful. They can go anywhere with you, especially when they are as good as Bella. But I was persuaded by Kath to go and see another dog who was in need of a home. Eleri had suggested a couple of times when I walked past the farm at Treginnis that I should take Floss home with me. Floss, who looked like an overgrown Jack Russell, failed sheepdog, bottom of the pack with her tail curled so tight under her frightened tummy that I thought for a few days that it was docked. Needless to say Bella’s kindness did not encircle this new bitch in the pack.
I took Floss with the idea of encouraging a friend to have her. She is still here and has a flag of a tail. She loves ponds and balls and has grown to tolerate cats, and in that way cats have they love to sit just that little bit too close to her for comfort, hers, not theirs.
Why do I choose to live with dogs? A different kind of companionship. I love to walk and walk with the dogs and watch them run wild and always come back and sit for a while if I stop to rest or look at the view, or write and think. Bella leans against me, reading the wind, pointing out foxes. I love the way they come and pull me away from my work and make me walk, whatever the weather, if they think I have been still for too long. I love the wolf wildness and protective nature of Bella, who guards the cats when we walk. I love to watch them dreaming by the fire in winter. My life with dogs seems so much more selfish than that with the cats.
Bella’s muzzle is greying now. I still love to hear her heart beat. Floss is a clown, and Rosie, well, she is an inspiration in her own way.

My cats, their human?

I rarely get the chance to comment on the cat's blog. It seems these days that between teenagers and cats I rarely get to use the computer. But today the cats have let me post on their blog, but only because the posting is about them. It is not really that cats are ego-centric (much!)
Anyway, the other day I was asked why I chose to share my life with cats and this question got me thinking. At four in the morning when they have woken me yet again and I step on a dismembered and neatly arrange dissected mouse, or one of them decides it is too cold and windy to go out and the corner of the kitchen is just the place to poo, or one sneaks into my studio and "improves" the painting I have been working on all week, I do begin to wonder.
My first cat came to me by unhappy chance, a week old with eyes still shut, small enough to rest in the palm of my hand. His mother had been run over and I raised him like a baby until he was the biggest cat in the land. He loved to come for walks, and when I moved here he was so in love with the wildness.
He disappeared one day in September and the weather was bad so I knew something had happened. He was such a big cat and the kittens I went to see were so small that I got two. This happened more than once, and now I have six.

What I love about cats is their independence. They do not need us at all and sometimes only laziness makes them hang around with humans. Why hunt when you can get a bowl full of something tasty?
I love their utter disdain, their rudeness, their honesty. They do not stand on ceremony, or mince words. If they do not like something, or someone, they soon let you know. Cats do not know what it is to have to be polite.
I love the way they do whatever they want whenever they choose.
I love their jewel eyes and their silk fur, their warmth and the way that they sleep, in sunshine and in shadows, trusting like a baby.
I love their elegant perfection and grace of movement and luxuriousness.
But most of all I love the way they try and teach us the importance of living in the moment. They do not worry about what has happened, what might happen. They live in perfect elegance in the "now". They are small exclamations of perfection.
And so I will continue to share my life with cats. If they allow me the favour.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008


Now that the moon is in balance, half in dark and half in light, we find the key to a secret. Shadow Cat holds the moon's darkness, for a while and in the world of shadows the dark cats dwell. We have always wondered where our shadows live when the sun does not shine. They live as cats in the dark world. And there, when the dark moon shines its deepest velvet darkness they cast not a shadow, but a lightness of themselves upon the ground. Each cat in this world has a shadow cat in the dark world. This is the balance of the world, of the night and day, of darkness and light. All things are necessary, all are equal in their beauty.
In the full moon's glory the two worlds come together and we dance with our shadowcats.
All things come to light, and now we know this.

Night moon, morning moon.

Last night the moon rose into the darkest night sky with pinprick stars. Butter yellow, bright, beautiful. This morning she still rode the sky, mellow silver light in a harebell blue morning.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Conversation overheard in the kitchen on Monday evening

Maurice: "Well, it looks like cat food, and it says cat food on the tin. What does it taste like?"
Pixie: "Cat food."

Moongazing and the Shadowcat

Half of the moon has now been taken by the Shadowcat to rule in the world of shadows. This morning, for a brief time, the moon wore a halo of silver fire crystals to decorate her splendour. All too soon it slipped away in the lightening of the sky and she became pale, translucent in the blue, lighting a silvered pathway over the sea.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Elmo helping

Today as a steady rain has fallen I have been helping Her with sketches and ideas for paintings and being warm in the house of melting cats.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

A taste of the moon and a song of light

Someone is stealing pieces of the moon again, night after night, small bites. Outside it is so still the wind does not breathe. Around the lights of the house moths dance and beyond them aerymice sing hunting songs. Across the mottled sky the band of light from the lighthouse swings. The spring runs silver in the muted moonlight, singing a counterpoint to the bats.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Queen of the wild woods.

In the woods where small leaf flames still clung to the very tips of dark twigs, Bella dreamed of being wolf. Reflected trees barred her eyes. Her senses caught the scent of the ancient ones. She felt the wild blood flow through her heart and heard the ghost wolves howl, calling to her across time. The woods and all within them were hers.

Friday, November 14, 2008


Today She was listening to the radio when She heard that The Roald Dahl award had been won by Andy Stanton for Mr Gum and the Dancing Bear. ( They did not mention that also there was another winner, The Witch's Children Go to School, by Ursula Jones and Russel Ayto).
What caught Her attention was a comment by Andy Stanton.
"I am the sort of man who sits and worries about whether cats secretly have money that they don't tell us about", he said.
She is now looking at us funny, and watching where we go to see if we have money, secret money. She does not realise that money is an abstract concept created by humans to enslave other humans. We are cats. We curl in the sunshine, walk where we will, sleep by the fire and practise mind control on humans. We have no need of money.
But whichever cat controls the mind of Andy Stanton needs to keep better control of what he is thinking.
Meanwhile congratulations to all of them and a special message to Andy. We do have secrets, special cat secrets. Sssshush.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Calm, still, quiet night

Imagine. Above is an ocean of air. We stand on the bed of the ocean and see the surface dappled with moonlight, a thin surface of the ocean that hides behind it an eternity of starlight. Through the ocean vast whale clouds travel, dark against the silvered surface, shadows. Closer, aerymice shriek their song in the stillness, high and sweet, hunting the late moths, winged feasts for hungry bats. Across the fields heavy horses call into the night. The air is still. Sound travels. And over all this she rides splendid, bone white, silvered moon. Almost full, but her shadows dampened by a silk thin cloak of cloud.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

A stone in a pond

The moon in the early evening sky looked like a precious white stone, thrown into the sky pond by a giant hand. Silver ripple clouds circled her.
Now her light burns bright through even the thickest clouds and moonshadows dance all around.
Almost full, always beautiful.

Elmo tells why Rosie smells.

It happened something like this. The day was sunny, cold wind, bright light, beautiful. We cats all gathered for a walk but She piled the dogs into the car, one dog, two dogs, three dogs, and off they drove, to walk in the wild world, we don't know where.
When they came back Floss told me why the puppy one was wet. It seems they were walking on the cliffs when Rosie found a smell like heaven and decided to decorate her head with it. None too pleased with this puppy behavior She found a big metal pond and dunked the dog, smell and all, and scrubbed and washed and Rosie had a swimming lesson and a bath all in one.

And even though the bath was in beautiful rain water still an essence of something hung around Rosie, a reminder of the walk on the cliff tops.
This evening She discovered that the pungent scent of fox, which is perhaps the worst smell, unless you are another fox, can be removed by washing in tomato sauce. If I was Rosie I would run now before she gets mistaken for a hotdog.


Rosie smells!

Follow the arrow

Where ever I go an arrow points at me, so that people know that I am the gingercat with the very special whiskers.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Artist's model, fiddle player.

Max has been in many books, We Are All Born Free, How the Whale Became, Little One We Knew You'd Come and most especially Singing to the Sun, but he does not often feature on the blog for the house of gingers. He does little but pose for paintings and curl in cupboards dreaming. So he was very pleased when asked to help the publisher for Singing to the Sun to road test, or as we say, claw test, a new feature on their website. As a result Max now has his own blog.
As bloggers of experience we find the layout a bit strange, but are helping Max, and would welcome feedback, so if you have time go along for a look. To read some of the posts including the biog where She goes on a bit about herself you have to click on the bits that say "read more".
And meanwhile here is a picture of Max doing what he likes best, playing lullabies to mice, from Can You See a Little Bear.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

A treat.

Someone has been sending Her flowers again. What, I say, is wrong with a bunch of mice with their tails tied together? Left in the right place it can be thoughtful and romantic. Take Annie. Queen of cats both wild and tame. Her cat put one in her handbag just before she went on a long train journey to Bristol. How kind is that! Imagine, trundling along feeling a bit peckish, put your paw in a bag and out comes a fresh mouse.
These flowers are from Her favorite flower shop in Haverfordwest where they always do something wonderful with ribbons. But they don't do bunches of mice, and anyway, even if they did we are better at arranging mice ourselves. But not flowers.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Where the water goes

Today Rosie went for a walk and found where all the rain had gone to that fell so heavily last week.

And afterwards she found a great deal of mud.

A quiet start of day and end of night.

In the garden, in the time that is still night, almost morning, when darkness still holds the world, the stars are swallowed by clouds. Each day when the new light comes there is a small moment of awe. It is still enough to hear a shrew squeak, but over the hill the waves can be heard, biting the cliffs. Unusual. More often there is a distant murmur of sea on shore as the waves roll up the gentle sand slope at Traeth Mawr.
Soon a new day will begin as the night tips over into daylight, but for now this is a time of quiet peace and we can snooze, islands of ginger purr, on Her bed while She reads.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Exercises in sleeping

The rain stopped, the sun came out and the song of the stream slowed to a trickle. In the dark of night we slept, Maurice dripping over the sofa,

Kiffer and Martha curled on a beanbag,

Pixie warm above the fire with a Bagpuss mouse held close, and

Rosie in the biggest dog basket, stretching her legs as long as long could be.