A cat outside yelling for food. It’s dark. Not even a star out. The cat sits close to my back door; scratching. His nails shriek on the tin. All I can do is hear him. I can’t see him. Must be black. Or, maybe gray. He claws harder, faster. A real need of urgency. I turn on the back stoop light. There’s nothing there.

Maybe the light scared him. The sudden force of energy. I go back to drinking my coffee; leaving the light on. And, there he goes again. Meowing loudly. Almost calling out words in English. Talking to anyone that’ll listen. I go back to the door. This time with a saucer of milk. I open the door and he takes off again. Scared of a human presence.

I leave the milk out for him. The sun is coming up. I turn off the light. Moments later I hear him say meow one more time. As if to say thank you. I look down at the saucer and it is empty. He got what he wanted. I’m glad to have served him.

The next morning there were two cats at my back door. They talk loudly. Like two drunks in a bar. I fill a bowl of milk for them. Open my door. And set it down in front of them. They both meow. Both finish and lick their paws. Then leave.

Haven’t seen them for awhile. Stopped coming around. We are only here for a short time.

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