Pat and Mike

I go to Grammie Bess’
for a week
to the house
where my father grew up

to the wisteria-covered front porch
and the heavy door with a bell you ring by turning,

behind which
two orange tabby cats
Pat and Mike –

* * *
Mike I pet.
He’s easy to love.

But Pat, leery of people
since being hit
by a trash bin
tossed by a garbage man
after it was emptied,
and prone to turn on
those who
brush against his tender spot,
often goes wanting for affection,
as so many with tender spots do.

I try to pet Mike
when Pat is not looking,
so his feelings aren’t hurt.

Later, braver, I learn
the sore spot is on Pat’s back
and to avoid touching him there,
that petting his head is a safer bet.

Ministry to the wounded
so often has to do with
going back after being scratched
and finding the approach that is less threatening.

Such big thoughts
stemming from the memory of two cats!

Originally posted in July 2010.

* * *

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About Marilyn

Reading, thinking, listening, writing and talking about faith, creativity, ESL for refugees, grief and finding the story in a story. Student of Spanish. Foe of procrastination. Cheez-it fan. People person with hermit tendencies or vice-versa. Thank you so much for reading.
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