Free to Run

One from the archives (totally reworked) describing the day I came home to put my mother’s old cat beyond suffering. 

      Free to Run - Stormwolf

The dreaded hour, my summons home,
a sombre task.
Always fiercely a one-woman cat
rescued from cruelty, untrusting
hissing exchange,
for tentative interaction. 

But last night you crept in
slept on my chest…
as though in unspoken ,
feline appreciation,
of my forthcoming sad service.

The stark environment, juxtaposed
sanitised steel tables and antiseptic,
with soft fur and beating heart.
Stroking your fragile frame
clouding eyes locked
with tear-filled, loving gaze,
and you were gone.

Mindful of when healing starts,
I took you home, still warm,
cradled like a new-born, babe-in-arms.
Black and white tail dangling from pink blanket,
ears still alert.

Tenderly she kissed your peaceful head.

Two old ladies, bonded by love
beyond space, time and form,
yes, even death.

Placing you gently in the ground.
In company now with childhood furred friends.
Years slipped away…

I gave thanks.


© stormwolf 2023
Views: 3318
critique and comments welcome.
Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

chilling! very well written poem, thanks!


A very Moving poem, Alison. Reminded me of when we had to ‘let go’ of our Dalmatian. Brought tears to my eyes.
I think animals have an instinct for what is happening – hence the cat lying across your chest. They are part of family and loved. I’m sure your Mum missed her so much, but knew that decision had to be made – a decision we all dread.
Beautifully written.
Eira x


A heartfelt and very hard to write poem I know, I have needed to write several to help me through such sadness. I had the same four cats all rescues with me for almost twenty two years, I lost them one by one at about eighteen month intervals. The first three would ‘visit’ me: for several seconds they appeared so clearly I knew which one it was and always greeted them. I believe my last cat had been a link to each one after death and wondered if I would see them when I also lost him. The answer, to… Read more »


Ohh, your poetry never fails to get through to me, this one is so sad and so well written, all I can say is ohh. Best keith

Flag Content