from the edge of the moon…

I was told to never touch Effrom, my rescued cat, unless it was a dire emergency because he didn’t like to be touched. And so I obeyed, watching him watching squirrels. In the beginning our words were the toys I lavished on him and his food. And then I began talking to Effrom always from across the room, with just one unvoiced wish -that Effrom feel safe enough to touch me. He enjoyed a DVD of fish in an aquarium. Then there was the DVD of birds at a feeder – his favorite. In summer, I hung a birdfeeder and kept it filled with seeds. He liked when I would blow bubbles from a distance so he could burst them with his paws. When winter came, he kept track of the suet hanging where the birdfeeder had been. I no longer thought of being touched by Effrom, and he seemed content to live a continent away. During that winter, I became ill and when I returned from the doctor, I fell asleep on my bed. Groggy from a fever, in and out of sleep, I thought I felt something soft touching me, but there was nothing there when I opened my eyes. Though weak, I kept resetting the alarm in order to stay on an aspirin regimen and to see to Effrom. I was so ill that I had stopped talking to Effrom without realizing it. On my third day of rest, I woke in bed and on the pillow beside mine was Effrom with his eyes closed, purring – meditating, praying. How far we had traveled. And never guessing, as I sat up on my elbow, he opened his eyes and reached out for me from the edge of the moon so that I might know the stars.

Advertisements