11/16/19: loss and longing
She was the second dog in our house. The first, a beagle, had been a “dog-sitting” trial ownership. She, a shephadoodle, came to us under no such pretenses: Dad simply showed up with her.
I fed her dutifully, walked her consistently, played with her as only a devoted eight-year-old could. But that would not be enough.
Mom grew up with a wild phobia of any loose animal. While she ensured I did not develop such fear, she never overcame her own. When Snoodles had rightfully snapped at my brother, after he pulled her tail while she ate, Mom felt the first ping of terror.
I don’t remember Snoodle’s second strike. But I can’t forget the third.
Mom tried to explain what happened. When Mom had come home earlier that day, Snoodles had charged her. My dog had risen up on her hind legs, and had gum-bit Mom on her hand. Somehow, Mom had dragged Snoodles to the detached garage that bordered our backyard and locked her inside.
I cried, screamed, cried some more. It might have rained, even thundered. Mom cried on the phone to my father. I begged, pleaded. I swear to this day I could hear Snoodles whimper and bark.
None of it mattered. Mom could not live with my dog any longer. My father sadly made the arrangements. Soon, the apointed day and hour arrived.
as the feral cats approach
Snoodles and I
my tears as I walk
my dog for the last time
“rustled leaves…” first appeared in Tanka Poest on Site on May 10, 2019 for the prompt “Animal Friend”
for Real Toads’ Timetravel – Flashbacks with Björn (imagined by Björn)