This is Grace

This is one of the local possums that occasionally ventures onto the porch. It seems that with 7 cats living around the perimeter of my parent’s home in Appalachia, all the necessary cat food serves as a kind of invitation to the local wildlife. If there are no possums visiting the feeding troffs, then there are a couple raccoons. Thankfully, I have not seen anything larger than the raccoons, however, there have been sightings of black bears and even mountain lions. I imagine larger cats may look down upon the silly small-domesticated cats and I rationalize that, if that’s the case, they would never be interested in the lesser felines’ food. I am hoping, anyway.

With all of the interactions with wild animals lately, I have befriended, from a distance, this smaller sized possum whom I have lovingly named Grace. As soon as I saw her, the name came to me. Now that I have seen her a few times, I am trying to understand why Grace seems so fitting to an animal that is traditionally not the most lovely or elegant of creatures. It is true that I have seen a couple other possums; all much larger and somewhat aggressive if their cat food supply is being threatened. Grace stands out for many reasons. As opposed to standing her ground and growling a bit, she tends to hide if you approach too close. She is quite small and somewhat timid. And, more often than not, she isn’t after the food at all. She is taking solace in one of the flower boxes. As if she were one of the cats, she curls up in a comfy spot and bunks in for the night. Grace is being given something that we do not deserve. It is a gift. I suppose I named this small possum Grace as she has been a pleasant and unexpected surprise.

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