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Ugly


I stood under the tree enjoying the blow of the wind as I waited for my little friends to arrive.

Today was a special day.

Today was the anniversary of Ugly’s death.

Ugly was our local stray kitten. He was his namesake: One side of his ear was loop-sided and half of the other ear was gone, literally. He had scars that could rival the hardest of military men and criminals alive, and a huge patch of fur on his back and one of his hind legs were gone, showing the bald, rotting skin underneath and he walked with a limp on his front left foot.

Ugly was not very popular among our community. Housewives and old men sprayed him with garden hoses to keep him off their lawn. Teenagers threw stones at him and shooed him with sticks and brooms. He got whacked, kicked and shoved off from anyone and everyone imaginable. He was probably the most unloved creature in the whole wide world.

Despite that, he still continued to approach the people he met, asking just for a little love. He particularly popular with the little kids, but of course, they were forbidden to touch him by overprotective and hypochondriac parents.

He would approach them and rubbed his head against whatever was close in proximity, be it your shoe or your hand or just the hem of your skirt and pants, and purred in that almost raspy sound, asking for just a little bit of love. A stroke on the head or a scratch under the neck, anything was fine, as long as you give it.

Still, he continued to be the bane of existence to everyone else in the community.

A week ago, when I was on my way home from school, I saw the most terrible thing.

Ugly was being surrounded by huge neighbouring stray dogs, and was totally bullied into submission before literally being pummeled to the ground. I noticed a few people seeing this but no one came forward to shoo the dogs away. I braved myself and beat the dogs away with a stick before tending to Ugly.

Ugly was in total bad shape. He was bitten, mauled, trampled and mutilated beyond repair. Blood was all over the road and his tiny body shivered from the pain and shock. I quickly cradled him in my skirt and brought him home, and even though I knew there was nothing more that I could do to save his life, I tried to wrap Ugly up in bandages to at least stop the bleeding.

His breathing grew shallower and shallower, and his body weaker and weaker. I knew he was going to die any minute.

But that wasn’t the most heartbreaking part.

At the very last moments of his life, he lifted his trembling head, leaned against my arm and started rubbing very slowly against it, purring in that familiar raspy sound.

Even in his dying breath, he was still asking for just a little bit of love.

I held him with tears in my eyes, scratching the back of his head until he went limp in my arms.

Everyone seemed to take it in stride that Ugly was no longer there to bother them, but only the little kids noticed his disappearance, and when I told what happened and where I buried Ugly, which was underneath the lone tree up in the hill, they cried just as sadly as my heart had felt on the day he died.

Now it had been a tradition for me and the kids to come and visit Ugly’s grave on the anniversary of his death, and the little kids came religiously and punctually on that day, just as they have today.

One of the kids wondered whether or not he knew we came to visit him every year.

I assured him that he did.

After all, Ugly asked for nothing more.

Just a little bit of love.

5 Comments:

  1. Anonymous said...
    完成一個小目標,會把自己推向一個大目標.............................................
    Anonymous said...
    知識可以傳授,智慧卻不行。每個人必須成為他自己。.........................
    Anonymous said...
    一切與生俱來的天然贈品,時間最為寶貴 ..................................................
    Anonymous said...
    婚姻對男人來說是賭他的自由,對女人而言卻是賭她的幸福。............................................................
    宛妹宛妹 said...
    失去金錢的人,失去很多;失去朋友的人,失去更多;失去信心的人,失去所有。..................................................................

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