The Art of Sleeping by Tootie, Translated by Erica Miles
Make sure you have a good meal first. Get your human’s attention by sitting near your dish and giving her the look. If you don’t get fed right away, grab one of her legs between your paws to show her you are serious.
When your meal comes, eat to your heart’s content, concentrating on the wet food. Although it is mixed together, try to lick the wet food off the dry food, and leave over any dry food you don’t feel like eating.
After eating, take a break and leap onto your cat tree to get your bearings. Your human may feel inclined to pet you a bit at this point. That is fine, and perfectly in order.
Once you’ve digested your food, leap down to the floor and take a few swipes at your toy mouse to give yourself some exercise. Then walk around the room in a relaxed fashion, and smell everything you pass, in case anything has changed since you were last there; take a thorough inventory of your territory. Now comes the best part.
Leap onto your human’s bed. It’s especially nice if she’s sitting at her table, facing you and radiating approval. Examine all the rumpled blankets and find one that’s especially good to tunnel through. See if you can get to the other end that way. Explore all parts of the bed.
Pick out the nicest plush blanket and knead it a bit with your paws–to make it yours. Stare off into space (you’ll see your human admiring you out of a corner of your eye), until your eyes focus on nothing. Then nestle down onto the softness underneath your belly and let your head rest on your front paws. Drift off into a light sleep. You may still sense your human watching you, but that should just add to your sense of bliss. You may find yourself dreaming of food or softness, and experience an overall sense of security.
Relax more and more, till your mind becomes totally empty. You will now enter into a deep sleep, radiating perfect peace into the room around you. This is the attainment of the state known as “catsana.” You have reached the highest level of catitude. Stay in this state for as long as possible, and if anything should chance to disturb you, such as your human’s clattering her plates as she gets up from the table, you may look up for a moment, and then return dutifully to what you were doing.
Believe me, nothing will ever keep you from it for very long. For you have now mastered the art of sleeping, and you may go in and out at leisure.
(used with permission from The Greenwich Village Literary Review, which holds the copyright to this pet story for the year 2015)
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