Posted by: Dan | May 12, 2017

It Was the Whining of the Dog

It was the whining of the dog that he heard.  The dog whining, just outside the door.  He could, and he did, picture it with its muzzle thrust down into the floor, between its front paws, and its eyebrows raised in that way dogs raise their eyebrows when they have their chins down but are looking up at you.  Its tail was wagging in that way dogs wag their tails when they are sorry even though they can’t figure out what they did wrong.  Whining, and the thump, thump, thump, of the tail as it hit the wall that separated the bedroom from the upper hallway.  It wasn’t the hands on his body (although hands on bodies are not soundless).  It wasn’t the fingers in his mouth and around his throat (Eric Garner, he remembered, could still speak even when he couldn’t breathe).  It was the whining of the dog.

He wanted to comfort the dog and explain to it that it wasn’t the dog’s fault and he wanted to give it a treat and he wanted to take it with him when he left but he didn’t know leaving and he didn’t know speaking and “It’s okay, it’s okay, it’s okay,” he thought over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and thump, thump, thump, thump, thump, thump, thump, thump, thump, and the whining of the dog.  And “I’m sorry, too,” he thought, and he raised his eyebrows and tried to look up but he couldn’t.

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Responses

  1. this makes me incredibly sad…thank you for writing it, Dan.


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