Songs & Marzipan


Did I tell you about Marzipan getting excited about me singing a couple of nights ago? No? My singing isn’t really anything to get excited about so her reaction was a surprise.

It was late and i was listening to music on Youtube to relax before I went to sleep, and I started singing along. It has been a long time since I just sang for no reason but it was a happy little song that lured me in.

Marzipan was in the sitting room, but she ran down the hall, and jumped up beside me as I kept on singing. She put her paw on my shoulder, pulled my head around to face her with her other paw, and peered into my mouth — first with one eye and then the other. Then she stuck her nose in my mouth a bit with her ears flat behind. She drew her head back and gave me little licky-kisses on the tip of my nose and the corners of my mouth, purring as loudly as a bandsaw all the while. I could hardly keep from bursting out laughing, but that seemed quite rude so I went on singing while she stuck her nose in my ear and whuffled.

She kept purring and making little prrrt and mrrrt chirps. Finally she sat down beside me and watched the people on screen singing too, and then we had a super-cuddle and went to sleep together.

She’s weird — in a good way, you know.

It was a little song by ABBA, I Have A Dream, that mentioned “wonders” and “fairy tales”, and Marzipan may have thought it was about her — or at least about the world she knows.

The part about all of this that bothers me is realizing that I haven’t sung for so long that she thought it was something strange and amazing — she acted like she had never heard anything like it before — and she just turned eight, I think. That’s a long time for not singing.

I used to sing a lot when there were no humans around — in the house and in the car. There were story songs that I made up as they went along, and there were songs in a language that no one speaks — or understands. I’ve almost always lived with cats and used to sing to them too, just because they were there. They listened sometimes, but they never got excited about it.

I don’t even remember stopping singing… it was certainly nothing intentional. I got sick and didn’t get well again. I suspect it’s an energy thing. Anyway, that may all be changing now.

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6 thoughts on “Songs & Marzipan

  1. how wonderful you would consider singing again! Maybe your cats or a friend would like to sing with you. It feels so good. Please keep singing. It’s good for all of us.

    1. Margi, the cats will do nicely — they don’t know what a singer should sound like! So I sing for myself, the cats, and god/dess (because she doesn’t mind either). Somewhere in the Bible it says to make a “joyful noise” to the lord — it doesn’t say anything about being on key. So I shall try to find the energy to make that joyful noise. Like sitting in the woods in stillness, it’s also good for us to express joy — it makes the joy bigger and spreads it around. I expect the trees would like it too. <3

  2. I stopped dreaming for a while. Then I turned around and it started again and I’m glad it did. You can lose stuff sometimes and not notice at first, simply because it’s not there to be noticed. I like how your cat noticed as soon as the singing came back.

    1. Paul, as I’m sure you know, cats are very good at reminding us to notice what needs to be noticed. It may be their favorite trick. I’ve been thinking a lot about losing things and not realizing how much I needed them. Now I’m thinking about maybe getting them back– or finding something better if that’s more appropriate for me at this age. I’m glad your dreams came back too! They’re important in so many ways.

  3. Ah how the sound of singing soothes the heart, human or floofy. I rescue cats (and the occasional young raccoon with a lame paw due to a birth defect). To be honest, they rescue me just as much. I’ve taken care of many animals over the past decade but one in particular really has a hold on my heart. Hissy, so named because of her adorable warning hisses to me whilst begging me for food when she was no bigger than my hand, has had a rough start and has sustained several injuries in her just 9 months of life. One so severe (she was attacked by a much larger animal) has caused lingering damage.

    We trapped her for the first time to take her for a TNR and her shots and flea and deworming treatments. She didn’t like us much after that, but she did come back a week after we released her to eat. Unfortunately, she was still limping and it caused my heart pain just to watch her trying to get around, not to mention the fear I had for her because she was so vulnerable… So we trapped her yet again and took her back to the vet. Hissy (and her litter mate, Chloe, who tamed herself and came in a month ago when she showed up in a teeming rain storm looking for food and cuddles) now live in our house along with our other rescue cats, but Hissy lives in a room that she has all to herself because she is still so feral.

    We can’t let her go because she still has not regained use of the injured foot and I suspect it will take quite a while to heal, so I have undertaken the verrrry slow process of trying to domesticate her. I go into her room several times a day to talk to her. Sometimes she talks to me, other times she hisses or yowls at me. One night, a couple of weeks ago, she actually flopped around on her back like a kitten who had a normal start to life and presented her belly to me. And tonight, wonder of wonders, she actually greeted me nicely when I entered her room, came down off the top shelf in her kennel (her door is always open for her to come out should she want to; it’s a safe space for her, not a prison and is more like a luxury kitty condo lol), and started to approach me. She got spooked when someone opened the door behind me and ran back into her kennel to hide, but for a moment we had major progress. I still have not been able to touch her; I won’t do that until she is ready, but I have hope that that day will arrive soon.

    What does this have to do with singing? Well, my dear Jessica, I will share with you a secret that only Hissy and I have shared until now: I sing to her. When no one else is around and it is just the two of us, I sing to her softly and quietly. All manner of songs, but I have even written a song just about her, and set to the tune of The Beach Boys’ “Surfer Girl.”

    Jack, another of our outside ferals, also likes being sung to. Just don’t try to get too close to him hahahha.

    So keep singing to your kitties and to yourself and the Goddess. As Margi so astutely stated, “It’s good for all of us.”

  4. Barbara, thank you so much for sharing your experience with Hissy. Animals *do* like to be sung to — even wild critters. Squirrels and deer listen. I remember from long ago that they seem to like soft and rhythmic lullabies and ballads.

    When I first got my older cats, they’d been all of their lives in a shelter and were terrified of windows and open spaces and strangers. They spent their first two weeks hiding behind the books on the bookshelves — eyes would peer above the books when I went by. Of course, I pretended that I didn’t know they were there, but I sang to them a lot to help them to get accustomed to my voice and let them know just where I was in the terrifying huge (to them) house.

    I do understand your Hissy — I had one too, but she was two years old and according to the shelter, couldn’t be touched without huge leather gauntlets to protect the toucher. And I realize now, just this moment, that while they were still not really settled was when I spent 30 days in hospital and rehab. When I came back they were pretty wild again with people, but at home in the house. But — it was a hard time for me, and I think that was when I stopped singing.

    I talked to them a lot, of course, but I didn’t feel up to song. And like Dobro said, I hadn’t realized that I’d lost something. That was when Marzipan and Duffy were infants. Hmmm. Now, of course, they have pretty much all become people cats who do laps and purrs, sometimes even for strangers. They even love the open spaces of the porches, though they are still not running wild in the woods — and won’t ever be. Duffy would try to explain to the coyotes that *he* is the king, and they wouldn’t believe him even though he is almost the same color they are.

    It sounds like you and Hissy are making wonderful progress together. I’m so pleased for you both, and grateful for the help you give the homeless ones.

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