All cats are graceful, careful, and independent, but none more than Cleopatra. Always dignified, my tuxedoed aristocrat often sat halfway up the open staircase in deep thought, undisturbed by any commotion, staring out the front door I kept ajar. She earned the respect not only of my friends and family but of her animal neighbors that moved on past her, offering no challenge. I wondered what messages she sent out that kept order around her and what she contemplated.
(First published on TheRavensPerch.com)