|11 September 1885(1885-09-11) |
Eastwood, Nottinghamshire, United
|2 March 1930 (aged 44)|
I named my cat Frieda.
At the time---well, for some time---I was enamored with the writing of D.H. Lawrence.
Frieda was the name of Lawrence's wife.
They did not want to get married, but eventually did.
She left her German professor-husband---and her children---and ran away with Lorenzo---gadding about all over the world.
I didn't like Lawrence's short stories or novels as much as I liked his poems.
They had Beauty and Brevity.
I got my kitten, Frieda, from a buddy-muscian-poet, Paul Santoro.
His cat, the mother of Frieda, was a Calico.
Paul said before handing over little Frieda,
"Now take care of her."
And I said that I would.
One winter I left Frieda with some friends so that I could traipse off to a warmer place.
I asked my friends to take care of Frieda.
"Don't let her go outside."
When I returned from my wanderings a few months later, Frieda had given birth to two kittens.
One friend said to me,
"We tried to pull her apart from the other cat, but we couldn't do it."
I gave names to the two little fur balls.
One I named Rufus.
He had a little mole on his nose.
The other kitten I named Snowball.
She was as cute as any kitten can be.
I could barely feed myself, and really didn't want to take care of Frieda's brood.
So one summer day I put notes around the necks of Rufus and Snowball.
"PLEASE GIVE ME A HOME."
I left them in the alley behind my apartment.
I returned to the alley a few hours later, and there was Snowball, trotting behind a lady, with her tail pointed to the sky, happy as a lark.
Rufus returned to the apartment that night.
He entered through one of the window panes of the skylight on top of the apartment's roof.
Frieda ran away.
I never saw her again.
I thought that this was appropriate, knowing that her namesake had done the same thing.
The Calico mother was picked up by a hawk while Paul was coming back across the desert from California.