"What would religion be without laughter?" - St. Thomas Aquinas

"What would religion be without laughter?" - St. Thomas Aquinas

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Two Friends

The first Tom and Vinny in better times, inseparable.


It's a lot easier to write a blog as a cat than as yourself. That's one of the things I've discovered. I don't know why more people don't take on the persona of another--animal or character--and have at the world, or in my case, also embrace a world created within the pages of a novel. Actually, four cats now inspire the character of Father Tom. The original cat still graces the header of his blog and is very much alive in it.

In reality, his passing and the consequent hole in my heart is something I have trouble facing. He was my first editor, the constant visitor to my quiet spot under the stairs, the four-legged love of my life (I've had a couple of two-legged) and I miss him more than words could ever express. Before they did exploratory surgery almost two years ago without much hope for medical redemption, we had a long talk, my arms cradling him as we waited in the car for the clinic to open. It was pouring rain and I told him what was going to be happening. If he had to leave this Earth, I asked him to stay with me, and help me take his story as Father Tom to readers. I begged him to be with me as my inspiration, my ever-present muse. He purred. Wouldn't stop. I took that to mean he would.

No, I haven't talked about it. Now that I am, I find comfort in the fact that his absence is part of my life, not part of his story, one that lives on in as many books or worlds as I can create for him. And, my baby, that's the least I can do, my friend. If it weren't for you, there would be no Tom, no Temptation Parish and no laughter in a place just this side of holy.

I'm glad you lived long enough to see that you have a legacy and are still going to be very much a part of it. Your spirit will be there for every scene, innuendo and suspenseful bit--and so will your roman-collared sidekicks, Fathers Jack and Will and the lovable souls that now keep me company.

And with your spirit,

Julie