We never had anything to do with cats in our family, we didn’t have pets at home when I was a child, and I can’t remember any cats around our neighbourhood. In fact, I can’t remember having very much to do with carts at all, until Tamla, a kitten who belonged to friends and I had to look after when they went away. I began to appreciate then how elusive a cat can be.

All changed when we moved into this house in 2002. The people across the road had a pair of young cats, Smirnoff and Jack Daniels – named by their son, as you might guess! Jack soon took off and moved down the road to live with some other people – his decision, not theirs. Smirnoff is a real character,and even from being little more than a kitten he was extremely strong-willed and independent.

Over the years Smirnoff has mellowed and got used to us – especially as when our friends go away we look after him, giving him his food etc. He still is ‘a real character’, although, obviously he’s quite elderly for a cat now. Our friends were due to leave him in our care two weeks ago, but five days before they went, they came over to ask if we had seen Smirn, he had been missing for two days. This is extremely unlike him; he patrols around our little cul-de-sac, wanders up and down the road, cuts through the little alley to the road beyond and patrols up and down there, annoying the local dogs and keeping a younger kit in its place… for Smirnoff who likes his food to be missing… very unlikely. He also is extremely loud, and if he was suck anywhere (he’s not as agile as he used to be) he would certainly let everyone know.

Very sad, our friends departed on their holiday, leaving us the keys, just in case the old boy returned. They were having the builders in while they were away, but had told the men about Smirnoff, just in case… The weekend passed and he had been away for a week…

We had begun to believe that Smirnoff had truly departed; Friday night, twelve days after he left home, we returned from the pub and as we got to the front door, a familiar face looked out at us from under the car. I swooped on him and picked him up for a cuddle. I expected him to be thin, decrepit, scruffy… but he looked his usual sleek, handsome self. My husband ran over to Smirnoff’s house to get his food… he made a token effort, but only to please us.

Since then we have kept him with us – his home is full of builders and we don’t want him disappearing again!

Macavity: The Mystery Cat

Macavity’s a Mystery Cat: he’s called the Hidden Paw—
For he’s the master criminal who can defy the Law.
He’s the bafflement of Scotland Yard, the Flying Squad’s despair:
For when they reach the scene of crime—Macavity’s not there!

Macavity, Macavity, there’s no one like Macavity,
He’s broken every human law, he breaks the law of gravity.
His powers of levitation would make a fakir stare,
And when you reach the scene of crime—Macavity’s not there!
You may seek him in the basement, you may look up in the air—
But I tell you once and once again, Macavity’s not there!

Macavity’s a ginger cat, he’s very tall and thin;
You would know him if you saw him, for his eyes are sunken in.
His brow is deeply lined with thought, his head is highly domed;
His coat is dusty from neglect, his whiskers are uncombed.
He sways his head from side to side, with movements like a snake;
And when you think he’s half asleep, he’s always wide awake.

Macavity, Macavity, there’s no one like Macavity,
For he’s a fiend in feline shape, a monster of depravity.
You may meet him in a by-street, you may see him in the square—
But when a crime’s discovered, then Macavity’s not there!

He’s outwardly respectable. (They say he cheats at cards.)
And his footprints are not found in any file of Scotland Yard’s
And when the larder’s looted, or the jewel-case is rifled,
Or when the milk is missing, or another Peke’s been stifled,
Or the greenhouse glass is broken, and the trellis past repair
Ay, there’s the wonder of the thing! Macavity’s not there!

And when the Foreign Office find a Treaty’s gone astray,
Or the Admiralty lose some plans and drawings by the way,
There may be a scrap of paper in the hall or on the stair—
But it’s useless to investigate—Macavity’s not there!
And when the loss has been disclosed, the Secret Service say:
It must have been Macavity!’—but he’s a mile away.
You’ll be sure to find him resting, or a-licking of his thumb;
Or engaged in doing complicated long division sums.

Macavity, Macavity, there’s no one like Macavity,
There never was a Cat of such deceitfulness and suavity.
He always has an alibi, and one or two to spare:
At whatever time the deed took place—MACAVITY WASN’T THERE !
And they say that all the Cats whose wicked deeds are widely known
(I might mention Mungojerrie, I might mention Griddlebone)
Are nothing more than agents for the Cat who all the time
Just controls their operations: the Napoleon of Crime!

T.S.Eliot

PS breaking news! We have just spoken to the builders… apparently Smirnoff has been home since just after the neighbours went on holiday – the builders have been feeding him too!!

6 thoughts on “Our own Macavity

  1. I’m so glad that Smirnoff is safe and well. mysterious creatures cats, but they are very resourceful when it comes to getting food! They certainly aren’t as loyal as dogs! I have always loved the Macavity poem. I first learned it by heart when I was 10!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. My ex wife had a cat called Mork that she really didn’t care for but I loved it and he knew it.When I got home from work he would scramble up to my chest and gaze into my eyes and meow and purr and actually swoon with love and I would have to catch him before he fell to the floor love struck. I would ask him what adventures he’d gotten into that day and he would go on and on meowing in different tones with that funny look on his face as if he thought I understood everything he was saying. When my wife left me she took Mork just to spite me. My step daughter said Mork starved himself to death and died of a broken heart. When i die and go to Heaven I know Mork will be there to meet me with that silly smile on his face and lots of stories to tell me. Sure miss that crazy cat!!!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I’m sure Morks ghost is in our house because he had a habit of knocking the spare change we put on the dresser at night to the floor to wake us up to feed him in the morning. Lots of times I wake to find all the coins on the carpet and I feel something snuggle up to me in bed. He seems to like my now wife more than me but then again he always had an eye for the girls. Just like his old dad that little rascal.

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s