This story comes to littleWren from talented writer and regular contributer Kay Kerr
What do I do with your beds now, dog? There are six of them, you know. The outside bed, that was always a little too small, and the inside bed, that squeaked when you were running in one of your lovely dog dreams. Throwing them away seems heartless; you spent so much time in them after all. Especially towards the end. What about the striped bed, designed to cool you down. Don’t you know it was expensive, dog? Or the bed in the hallway, where you liked to lie after playing in the mud. I complained about the housework you made running mud everywhere, but now our home seems uncomfortably clean. The worst is the bed beside our bed – I can’t bear look at it, because you could never be close enough and now you’re far away.
What do I do with your water buckets dog? I still look to see if they need refilling of a morning, out of habit I suppose. They’re worthless really, those old plastic things. I know you preferred to drink from the hose anyway, where the water seemed fresher. Morning and dusk, before and after a walk, and as often as possible on a hot day. After a good drink you could bark for what felt like hours. I shouted at you for all that racket, but now the garden is unsettling in its quiet.
What about the fur you left everywhere dog? I teased your dad for saying it would make a good fur coat or blanket, but now I understand. After a hard day, or bad news, there was nothing more comforting than the soft warmth of your coat. How unfortunate that the one time we need comforting from that softness you aren’t here, because it is the loss of you we need comforting for.
You forgot to leave a treasure map, dog, to where all your best bones are buried. It’s a secret gone with you. You were almost as protective over those rancid things as you were over us. I moaned when you had bone breath, but what I would do to see your slobbery face again.
Every time there is a storm and you’re not under my feet, every time I cook chicken and you’re not in the kitchen begging for scraps, every day’s dusk at what was once walking hour, I think of you dog. More often than not it’s with a smile, because to have known the love and loyalty of a dog like you, we are truly blessed.
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