Pawprints and Raindrops Cookie on my art table. I have some catching up to do; I decided to slow down a little after Cookie passed. Now I’m remembering her, and ready to start posting daily images again, plus posting images from past years. This post is really not about the gratuitous photo of Cookie reclining on my art table out on the deck one fine summer afternoon a few years ago, though I do fondly remember how often she accompanied me—no, she supervised me—wherever I was, demanding to be outside with me and promising to be good. This photo was with the original post in 2010. In addition to Cookie, this post was one I published two years ago and it includes a poem I’d written and read that year at my annual poetry reading at Andrew Carnegie Free Library & Music Hall entitled “Pawprints and Raindrops” and it actually features my other tortoiseshell kitty, Kelly. This poem went on to be published in a variety of sites on the internet, and it also won both a Certificate of Excellence and Muse Medallion for poetry from the Cat Writer’s Association in 2010. Since I’m on a roll with practicing the recording of readings, I thought I’d record this one along with a slideshow of images. A link is after the poem, below. Coming Spring poetry reading, 2010. Thursday, February 18, 2010 was the date for “Coming Spring”, my fourth annual poetry reading and art exhibit at Andrew Carnegie Free Library & Music Hall in Carnegie, my home town. I featured 10 new poems and and the fourth and final painting of my “Art of the Watershed” series, “Spring Morning at a Bend in the Creek”, plus a display of favorite originals, prints and notecards; you can see the painting and read more about this event on my “What’s New?” blog. My biggest inspiration for poetry, prose and artwork is the world right around me, and I enjoy the opportunity to share it from the perspective of one who walks and hikes and bikes and carries a camera, art materials and journal everywhere—even around the house—so the inspirations are fresh. Looking at my body of work, this, of course, includes my cats, and my cats are vitally involved in the paintings and photos I create; even if they aren’t the subject, they are somehow physically involved with their creation by sitting on my lap, rolling pastels off my table, drinking watercolor rinse water and so on. Most visitors to The Creative Cat are familiar with my feline paintings, but I haven’t published too much of my feline poetry. I read this poem at my reading this year, and sometime soon I’ll feature other poems as well, some of which have photos, paintings or illustrations to accompany. About this poem…have you ever partly awakened and combined your sleepy thoughts with the reality of your surroundings? So I did one rainy morning in summer. As at least one of my kitties is always vigilant about me, my little tortoiseshell kitty Kelly realized that I was nearing waking probably before I did and came over to greet me, and with her help I slipped off into an illusion of dreamy contentment. PAWPRINTS AND RAINDROPS I am not awake but aware of the sound of raindrops whispering in the leaves and tapping on the roof in the early morning, still dark and little Kelly, sensing my awareness hurries over and steps on my back; I feel her tiny cold paws dimpling the surface of my skin as I drift off in the murmur of her purr and the rain I think of raindrops on water, I am the water, my skin the surface and I can look up and in the increasing daylight see the circular ripples of contentment mingling on my own surface. poem © 2010 B. E. Kazmarski Now you can listen to the poem too I’ve recorded it with a slideshow of images and uploaded it to YouTube, but you can click the embedded video below and watch it right here. [youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vkXVjMbQTcQ?rel=0] And visit another poem too, Things I Found in the Woods. Other places it was published I am grateful to the websites who published this poem and led to my winning the Certificate and Medallion. Pawprints and Raindrops and my painting “Sunday Morning” were featured on the award-winning The Daily Tail blog (now Taildom)! Please visit to read and enjoy, and also to read wide-ranging daily stories and images about cats, dogs, cows, birds, deer and just about anything else with fur or feathers…or scales…or… This poem was also featured in Catnip Chronicles in April 2010, and this was the reference for which I won the award, so click over there to read it and then subscribe to this monthly online journal of all things cat! I’ll have one more cat poem from 2010 tomorrow, but I’m not sure what I’ll use for the slideshow… About my poetry and poetry readings In December, 2006, two of my poems were chosen to be published on a section of the Prairie Home Companion website entitled “Stories From Home/First Person” for submissions of writing about the place we feel most familiar. ACFL&MH invited me to perform a poetry reading and to display the artwork that inspired those poems. After each show I’ve built a web page with the poetry and art I featured. Please visit, read my poetry and view my artwork. My prior readings have been: "Paths I Have Walked", book of poetry. “Paths I Have Walked”, book of poetry. “Paths I Have Walked”in 2007, featuring “Dusk in the Woods”; “Winter Twilight” in 2008, featuring “Summer Morning on the Creek”; “Change of Season” in 2009, featuring “Autumn Comes to the Valley”; “Coming Spring” in 2010, featuring “Spring Comes to a Bend in the Creek” In 2011 I published a small book of my poetry from these four readings entitled Paths I Have Walked. Right now it’s still available in print—read more about it on my Portraits of Animals Marketplace blog or order it from my website—but one of the reasons I keep reading these poems is to practice reading them for the audio version of this book. I am also preparing it for various e-readers. I’ll have one more poem from this year tomorrow. ________________________ All images used on this site are copyrighted to Bernadette E. Kazmarski unless otherwise noted and may not be used without my written permission. 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