I wake before the alarm, the new alarm in the phone with the ringtones I like that start quiet and get louder. I lie in the bed and wait for the alarm even though I could just get up, the reasons are murky like dreams and the soap bubble cheer of the alarm washes them away and I get up and my eyes are covered with soapy rainbow film, but I blink it away. The cat is sleeping on the box that the dehumidifier came in and is still in because every time I think about it she is sleeping there. I am perplexed by this new occupation as it is a place she can be that does not bother me; see for example: sweater drawer, kitchen counter, washing machine, laptop keyboard. I walk by and she looks up sleepily but does not move. Every morning I ask her if she will die today, and every morning she is closer, her fragile bones increasingly prominent under her poor itchy skin, but she is still happy about food, about butting her head under my hand to be petted, about curling in the crook of my son's legs when he sleeps, so she's not there yet. The coffee pot grumbles and sputters while I put away last night's dishes. We watch The Daily Show and our mouths laugh around bites of toast covered with peanut butter, camaraderie, the ease of not needing to peek to be sure the moment is shared. The front door closes and I put in a load of laundry, wash and stack the breakfast dishes, note the condensation on the windows but the cat is back on the box and I can't bear to disturb her; maybe tomorrow. I crush ginger and lemon into a pot for tea and start to work, a paper on the begging behavior of cuckoo chicks. Another sunless winter day spreads before me and ecstasy is impossible but simple pleasures are easy to grasp, if you reach out your hands.