party lines

…we called them telephones back when we spoke with nervous air. muttered..daddy? are you there? told to speak to your aunt on her birthday, and give “over the line” kisses to the new baby. We held the receiver so tight not wanting to be the first to say goodnight. that once valued tool, that gave voice to love and fools. I knew 50 numbers by heart, never called anyone past 10 from the start. Ended on questionable bad notes with the dead dial tone as my final answers. Got calls from wrong numbers then asking,well who are you? , do you matter? Got a call from old man Joe from Joe’s drink and eat, says a new steel tower is going up, messing up his view to the sea, the beach,and even the street.. wondering why no one comes in anymore to chat on clean welcome seats.. little does he know.. people will forget in 30 years how to say hello!, how are you?and greet….. f.messina 1.11,15