Old Fangs

Old Fangs

There’s too much Cat in me.

I could say it’s just the way I am, but some days I don’t find this satisfying. I could intellectualize everything, but again I find it too vain.

This has nothing to do with raven, either. I feel the need to stress this because most people in the past have overlooked the fact I am also a raven, and by that I mean as much. Raven is here in my body so intensely, but I’m not as well-equipped to verbalize and discuss it. This goes beyond me as a person, when cat essence is pretty much summarized as felinity and raven essence stays more elusive to us (as much in language as culturally). But my point was, this blurb isn’t about comparisons between the two.

When I say Cat is “too much”, I’m talking about the occurences of felines in my life even though I’m not crazy about them. Things could be different, as much identity-wise as in my spirituality and life; there could have been felines everywhere. But I haven’t grown up with cats, I’ve had various favourite animals that often weren’t even mammals, I don’t try to get closer to wild cats big or small, and the gods I worship aren’t feline gods. I’m not a multiple with feline parts either.

I’m a singlet who happens to be a corvid-feline and has a Jaguar totem, I may know of one other feline spirit and a handful of feline people, but that’s it. I haven’t asked for any of this, nor do I find felinity really more rewarding than other species. Likewise you could look at my art gallery, and outside of the occasional self-representation, you would mostly see different creatures (birds, canines, etc). I don’t obsess over felines.

And then, there is Scimitar Cat.

I say scimitar cat because it feels closest to Homotherium, but it could be some other ancient cat. I did consider the Smilodon family and even Barbourofelis (not a member of Felidae per se). Until I find a substantial enough element to change my mind, I feel scimitar cat is probably the best match; but information is scarce.

Scimitar cat is phantom limbs and alien body and flickering, not like (my) animal identity; it is not on equal terms with clouded leopard or raven. It does not feel like a spiritual thing either, or maybe I simply fail to get the message; everything feels too bodily-oriented anyway, it points to nothing in particular, it just is. A bodily experience. The strong neck and shoulders, the long front legs, the sloping back. The short tail. The canines certainly feel longer than a clouded leopard’s, but I am not absolutely sure to which extent (which is why I haven’t ruled out Smilodon and Barbourofelis entierely). I could elaborate on and on about what it feels like and how much it differs from my animality, but no matter how many adjectives I use to describe it, it will never answer the “whys”.

What is this? And why another cat?

I don’t even know if there’s an answer.

The experience has become pretty mundane to me; it’s been like that for years, so what else is there to add. Scimitar cat doesn’t even feel ancient or out of place to me in this modern, urban setting I live in. No more or less than clouded leopard and raven. Maybe it’s just the way I am, the way I live animality overall. Maybe it’s because I’m not a scimitar cat in the therianthropic sense, and I just feel it occasionally; so no value properly attaches itself to it. Maybe it’s a matter of all of these expectations of what is and shouldn’t be, and that as long as one thing is present in spite of being extinct, then it makes no sense for it to feel out of time.

At least it makes no sense to me; I feel I belong here and scimitar-cat-me as well, indistinguishable from the self. It is very much present and alive in my flesh, not myth nor cold bones. And it is nothing special. There is no sense of pride, and more often than not I just don’t know what to make of it. It makes no point and finds no place in my worldview either. Of course I could turn it into something special and idealize it and sublimate it, and wear it like a banner of otherkin whatever. Or I could declare myself a shapeshifter or metamorph and call this just another skin I can wear. I won’t, because neither would be true to my experience.

I am prone to be introspective and find meaning, but in the end I fail to see the point in Scimitar Cat. Sometimes it bothers me, and I feel there is too much Cat in me; but the rest of time I can only shrug and let it be.