There was a forest just beyond our back yard where my sister Aggie and I used to play. She would make tea parties for us and these two little squirrels in a clearing by Annie’s woods. And Sundays after church, she go there to the bank of the Kishwaukee River to talk to God. “I don’t care if you make it rain before I get home,” she’d tell him, “Or if I only get a little piece of dessert. But please stop making the birds eat the worms and stop the coyotes from eating lost cats. Why can’t they all just eat berries and pies and sandwiches?” She was worried about that because we each had a cat that we’d walk in the forest on a path through the trees. Then the one named Poo wriggled free from her leash to chase a butterfly and ran away. It was right after Aggie had taught Poo to sing “You Are My Sunshine” and three different Willie Nelson songs. They were very good friends, Aggie had lots of them, so she prayed even harder that Poo would be just fine. As much as I wanted to believe God heard her, I knew that it was true… that birds still ate worms and coyotes ate cats and sometimes we are all alone.
We weren’t supposed to go into the forest after dark but one night when Aggie wasn’t home for dinner, I was sure she’d gone there to find Poo. Every day I looked out my window, wondering if she had something to eat and somewhere to sleep and when she was coming home. I missed her so. Then one night, as I looked out at the forest, a star shined down on a little house on top of a hill that I’d never seen before. It was made of stones that sparkled in the starlight and it was haloed by luminous wings and it smelled like someone was baking a cake frosted in marshmallow cream. It was just the kind of place Aggie would go, I thought. She’d probably found Poo and made lots of new friends and forgot all about the time. So I took a snack from the kitchen and went into the forest to find my sister. It was seven o’clock on Christmas Eve.
Author: admin, 11 17th, 2011