Tiny meows from the brush behind our apartments drew our attention for two days. 
We couldn’t stand by while a kitten was obviously in distress. I climbed through a hole in the fence, searched through the brush and finally located the source of the crying.

It was a tiny grey and fluffy kitten. She fit into the palm of my hand with ease. 
That was two years ago. Callie, as we named her, is now full grown and has a happy home, where she is warm and well fed. 

At first she clung to me, her rescuer, but during the last year she’s attached herself to Ginny. She can’t wait for Ginny to go to bed, so she can crawl under the blankets with her. During the night, she moves from under the covers and sleeps at the bottom corner of Ginny’s side of the bed. She will not leave Ginny until Ginny gets up.

Then it’s play time and/or torture our older cat time, who has no claws to protect herself.

I look at her – happy and healthy. Then I remember the scared and tiny thing she was. She lived in the brush, abandoned by her mother and siblings, and cried for help.

If Ginny and I hadn’t got her, she most likely would have died a slow and lonely
death. We’ve given her two years and hope to give many more. 
In the house, we listen to her cries. They are pathetic. She still sounds like a kitten.
They are weak and high pitched. If she had cried like that in the brush, we would never have heard her. 

She was alone, scared, hungry and thirsty. She found the strength to cry harder. Callie heard us whenever we were on the balcony and knew we could help. She took deep breaths and cried as hard as she could.

Well that little lonely girl did get our attention. She’s our baby now. She’s our crazy 
kitty and we love her. 

There are a lot of people who cry for help too. Do we hear? Do we listen? I’d love
to say yes, but I probably miss many of their cries.

It’s time to listen harder.

The first picture is Callie on the night I found her. She is enjoying playing in the warm sofa. The second picture is of Callie a couple days ago. She was standing by the patio doors watching the snow. She’s still confused by it. 

~ Michael T. Smith
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