by Brian Michael Barbeito

What was it about the aged and cookies? Here was another one that relished them. Sebastian's grandmother was a specialist. People on the outside thought she was a bird enthusiast. Grandma could be seen refilling the bird feeders at all hours. After the morning fillings, it was off to her soaps, the rag papers, and several decades of rosaries. Ah, just periphery events, adjustments, and sidings. The main things were the cookies. These were on the brain and in the heart as much as Jesus. And who is to say, come to think of it, how one should worship? These cookies- and all cookies everywhere- were regarded as sacrosanct. Well housed in neat cupboards or in special drawers, the highest grade ones placed in semi-secret metal containers beside china! All varieties colors textures and makes could be found if one surveyed long enough.

Sebastian's grandmother was perhaps more familiar with the nomenclature, ingredients, packaging, pricing, and various specifications as regarded cookies than the manufacturers of the delectable treats themselves. In the mid-afternoons she would bring some out, and sitting in front of her there as Sebastian did was akin to waiting in contemplation during an Adoration. And wait he did, because he was both shy and polite. Seb, she would eventually inquire, do you want a cookie?  He would nod in the affirmative, having waited well and having known she would ask. Receiving cookies was something like receiving Communion and the whole process seemed to require a form of piety. It was a good ritual and the old woman was a good egg. Besides, it was some kind of industry standard that Grandmas were supposed to offer treats.

Sebastian had no real worries. Far off rain pounded against an August loam, but here the neighborhood was sun-kept. The birds gathered around seed outside and the universe with its large and small events proceeded on schedule.