This cold morning, youngest and I walk to my shed…

bracing against the cold bite of a hostile winter wind.

We tuck in as we round the corner of our house, facing its full assault.  We look at each other, shudder at the cold.

I struggle with the turn lock that houses all our things, including the dog food and chicken feed.  She fills her bowl for chicks, I load a container with dog food.

We hunch up more and walk to the chicken coop turned kitten corral and I notice Little Bit wanting to come out.  His real name, Luigi.  I look for the other, fluffy baby.  We secured them in the coop to save them from a Golden Retriever that doesn’t mean harm but that tosses kittens and sometimes it kills them.

I open the top hatch, fumbling with the cold frozen latch and stare into unseeing eyes.  And the name that means blooming, glory, green shoot, now means dead, cold, lifeless.  Why?  I can’t tell.  I don’t know.  She’s just dead.

I close cold death hatch.  I let out Luigi, leave him free…because sometimes even when you are protecting it doesn’t matter.

Later on in the day, lone survivor kitten’s father draws near.  They survey each other.  Do they claim one another.  They sit staring at each other and I wonder what their kitty thoughts contain.

I am full of thoughts and prayers for a dear friend whose little boy is to face surgery today.  A surgery not to fix but to alleviate the amount of pain.  Trusted surgeon who had said no, says she must do something because now, the drugs they aren’t keeping the pain at bay.  The suffering has increased so much.

Not to heal, just to bring some relief.  And I pray for this surgeon, this boy, this family in another state, whose grief stains my own emotions and has left me raw and sad this day.

And I ask the shadow to pass over…