Smoke Signals


Frankie sat on the steps of the landing near the front door, head raised as if to howl at the moon, and he barked some short barks, several at a time, waited, the dog next door responded, then he did it again.

We could not see what the issue was, or perhaps, more precisely, we couldn't hear what the issue was, communicated between dogs, each inside their homes, talking about something of interest to both. I would like to think that the dogs down the row of houses each had an opinion in this conversation, but my ears are not that sharp.

This morning, enjoying my coffee in the yard, breathing in the not yet hot air that will descend later, I listened and watched as a bird, perched on a naked branch in a yard a few down from mine, raised its head, much like Frankie does, and chirped out a message that was reciprocated.  A moment later several birds followed the herald and flew east, I assume to meet at the other end of the conversation.

We all want to communicate. We all want to be connected.

Yesterday morning our Tuesday Prayer group resumed for the season. We've been meeting, with membership drifting according to life and work and transfers, for more than twenty years. Our founder, Theresa, who was our glue for ages, recently moved far away. A page in our chapter turned.

We met at Marilyn's, she of the delicious scones and clotted cream, each of us grateful to be together again. Brenda brought a list of questions from her goddaughter who is to be confirmed. We discussed what is important about believing in God, what is important about belonging to the Catholic Church (sacraments, community, Mary, two thousand years, and each other seemed to win, from my hearing) and, being us, we covered so much ground not asked in the original questions.

Smoke signals, drum beats, pony express, e-mail, twitter, Facebook, and, oh, yeah, actually getting together in person. Good stuff.