Sparky's World: (A Cats' Tale)

Sparky had an inquisitive and adventurous spirit. One of the most interesting parts of his new home was the cavernous closet where Stocking Feet kept all of her clothes. There were so many different colors and textures and delightful odors, so many new experiences to be sampled and enjoyed. But, Sparky’s closet playground was not always open. Sometimes Stocking Feet closed the sliding doors too tightly to allow Sparky to squeeze in. Then, he could only sit and sniff and imagine.

Today Sparky was in luck. The doors were just enough ajar to allow Sparky to wiggle his way inside. And, in he went full of wonder and anticipation. The first thing he noticed was the pair of black cowboy boots standing at attention against the far wall of the closet. They were highly polished and covered with all sorts of silvery stitched designs. Sparky debated for a moment whether or not he should salute them because of their splendid and awesome military bearing. Presently, he was distracted by the feel of a long, velvety evening gown that gently brushed against him. He stepped back a bit and glanced up to get a better look at this fascinating new garment.

“My goodness”, he thought. “It goes all the way up to the ceiling. I wonder what it’s like up there. I’d better check it out!”

Sparky dug the needle-like claws of one of his fore paws into the velvety fabric and began to pull himself up. He climbed steadily, paw over paw, until he reached what appeared to be some sort of narrow plateau. Later, he would come to understand that this convenient shelf was formed by the wooden hanger that Stocking Feet put inside the dress before she hung it up in the closet.

“How thoughtful”, Sparky commented to himself, “to make such a nice resting place for me. Climbing all the way up here was a lot harder than I thought it would be. Exploring such heights takes a lot out of a little kitten like me.”

Sparky was perched at least five or six cat-lengths above the cowboy boots by now. He was catching his breath and reveling in his successful scaling of this daunting precipice, when all of a sudden the closet door shook, rattled, and rolled wide open. In an instant Sparky was face-to-face with a very startled-looking human visage. That startled look quickly changed to one of fuming anger. It was Stocking Feet. She gave Sparky the distinct impression that she was not happy to see him.

Instead of complimenting him for his daring accomplishment of scaling this treacherous height, she rudely reached into the closet, roughly snatched him from his hard-won perch, and dropped him unceremoniously on the bedroom floor. The next thing that Sparky heard was the sound of the closet door being slammed shut with an ear-splitting crash. This was followed by a stream of unintelligible and most unfriendly sounding noises that cascaded down on him.

Sparky stood motionless for what seemed like a very long time. He was bewildered by Stocking Feet’s bizarre behavior. It was so uncharacteristic of her. Up until this very moment he had only seen the kind, gentle, and supportive side of her.

“Oh, well”, he thought, philosophically. “There=s just no accounting for human behavior. One minute it’s all kisses and hugs, and the next thing you know they’re throwing you out the door. I’ll just have to learn to rise above it.”

Sparky wandered into the kitchen and began to console himself with a few laps of cool water and a couple of crunchy, golden-brown nuggets that had been recently poured out into his food bowl. Fresh food always perked up his spirits. When his nostrils and taste buds and stomach were satisfied, his emotional equilibrium returned as well. Sparky put the memory of the earlier unpleasantness behind him and headed to the front door. He sniffed intently at the wisp of air that managed its way between the door and the jam and began his best “I want to go outside and play” serenade. Stocking Feet responded promptly and openĀ¬d the door for him.

Sparky sprang quickly over the threshold and into the fresh morning air. He felt comforted by Stocking Feet’s quick response and interpreted it as a sign that she was trying to make up for her earlier inexcusable behavior. Sparky had a positive outlook on life. He always liked to think the best of others. And, he reminded himself that training a human being was a full-time job that only a cat could do really well.

Sparky strolled leisurely around the perimeter of the house, stopping occasionally to sniff the flowers or to inspect the progress of the young, newly planted shrubs. Satisfied that everything was okay, Sparky began to look around for a place to take a nap. Usually, any one of the sun-soaked stepping-stones would have been an inviting place, but not today.

There was a bit of a chill in the air. Where could he curl up that he would be both safe and warm? As he scrunched down to avoid another chilling blast of unwelcoming wind, he noticed a space beneath the car in the driveway. He hunkered down and made his way under the car. He was surprised to see how much room there was under it.

Whoosh, the wind found Sparky even under the car. As he shivered, he looked up and saw an empty space between the top of the rear axle and the underside of the car. He jumped up and snuggled down. The wind blew under and around the car, but it could not reach him on his cozy perch. Sparky laid his head on his forepaws and yawned. His eyelids fluttered and then closed. He felt himself drifting off into kitty dreamland.

As he was about to achieve complete harmony with the entire feline universe, he was abruptly catapulted back into a heigh-tened state of attention by the grinding, mechanical sound of the car’s engine. Before he could twitch a muscle, the axle shot out from under him and pitched him on to the driveway below. He fell awkwardly on his side and watched in terror as the underside of the car passed above him. Instinctively, he rolled to his feet, dashed out of the yard, and sought refuge in a nearby thicket.

Sparky remained in his hiding place for the rest of the day and all through the night, stunned and unable to move. When he finally mustered the courage to venture out from his protective cover the next morning, he was greeted warmly by a much changed Stocking Feet. Sparky smiled to himself. At least some good had come from his near brush with death. It made Stocking Feet realize just how wonderful and precious he was.

Life was good!

Sparky's World: (A Cats' Tale)


Salinas, United States

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Artist's Description

Exerpted from my book, “The game of Life” Log on to to learn more about it.

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  • DevaDaDiva
  • DevaDaDiva
  • jegustavsen
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