Tiny Black Cat 

(Leland Avenue, The Loop)

A black cat crossed our path. Well, it didn't actually cross our path; first it crossed mine, then Ammen's. When it happened to me, I made an effort to maneuver around her, for superstitious reasons. Embarrassing to admit, superstition supposedly being the religion of the ignorant.

Then last night Ammen heard the same cat (as it turned out), crying from the dark space behind us. We were walking along; he was telling me about a world I knew nothing about. I didn't hear the cat, but he did. It stopped him midsentence, causing that world I just mentioned to vanish.

For an hour we tried to coax the tiny, emaciated cat from behind the bushes while Saturday-night drunks teetered past, following the crevices in the sidewalk. You could see they were incredulous, but nobody asked any questions. Maybe they're that kind of drunks. Or, more likely, it's that kind of neighborhood.

It was Ammen who decided to rescue the cat, and the girls went on about his "bleeding heart." But it was I who housed the cat, and it is I who is now taking it to the vet. I receive no accolades, however, for my part in the rescue of the black cat. Only a wet spot in the passenger seat, where the shivering little devil just tinkled.

More by Timothy Lane

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