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      Sad Christmas: one ball, one bone, the hole is filled, three stones on top

     


Two days after Christmas 2009, my dog had a stroke at 2 in the morning marked with extremely weird high pitched yelping sounds. I remarked how strange they were as I lay in my bed, going back to sleep. The next morning he would not stand up, he laid there with his head held massively crooked looking up at me. Cradling him with a towel underneath his stomach (a full sized golden retriever), I tried to get him up and walking to go outside for his last walk through the snow. His entire left side was functioning poorly, he could not walk strait. The hole was dug and placed him next to it did I. The mood was somber, not only was this his last, but the appearance of his crooked head and his big brown eyes looking up at me combined with the fact that he would not stand still and instead was wandering in the opposite direction in a squiggle of a path; if ever guilt was defined, then this was it. Catching up, the barrel to his head...and crack. The soft snap of high powered hollow point 22 shell. Yet a terrible groan and further trying to wander away from me with red flowing out his mouth. Again, catching up, another crack. And drop. Body still, yet face functioning with fading life. This time, a river of red flows in a continuous wave out his mouth and nose, steaming, and bubbling from his last breath. It is done, but still the heart races and the legs twitch. Wrapped up in a blanket of navy blue, he is placed in the earth. One bone, one ball, placed on top, then the necessary numbing of emotions in order to finish the deed. The hole is filled, three stones on top. All the love he gave me, and his last moment I give him is one of crippled stumbling around with one in his head to follow with drowning in red. I loved you and always will. Beyond all I knew how I could feel, I am sorry. -flyingwolf16@aol.com

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