If We Had the Super Powers Of A Cat…

What would we learn?

Deborah Barchi

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Photo by Humberto Arellano on Unsplash

It is late morning. My cat jumps from his warm bed, arches his back, and treads with cool deliberation to the closed door leading to the screened porch at the back of the house.

Ready as always to assist, I open the porch door for him, and stand in the doorway a moment. I watch him with pleasure as he tilts his head upward, his nostrils quivering, his ears swiveling independently of each other, as he captures the threads of sound and scent no mere human would notice.

What must it be like to live in the world with the super powers of a cat?
An almost effortless awareness of every small movement, every scent in the air? The minutia of sound that stirs beneath the silence?

If I could slip for a moment into the body and mind of a cat, would I be overwhelmed with the flood of new sensation, as if drowning in an icy wave? Or would I understand, at last, my small yet significant place on this spinning planet?

For make no mistake. Every cat knows its own significance. Every cat understands its very life depends on the accuracy and understanding of its senses.

We, in our ignorance, elevate the value of our own minds and sight-centered perceptions. Ignoring the multiplicity of the signals and urgent messages of the living world around us, we think ourselves wise and inviolate.

We do so at our peril, as some people and even some nations are beginning to understand. At the peril of all life that exists with us on our fragile, extraordinary planet.

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Deborah Barchi

Deborah Barchi has recently retired from her career as a librarian and now has time to read, explore nature, and write poetry and essays.