Family Thanks Giving
Three dogs, paws up on the gate to the garage whenever I get home. The little one leaps up and down like some ballerina at the bar, the biggest with his irritating barks–loud and harsh and insistent—for whatever reason, be it mom’s arrival home or a dog who dares to pass by in the street. All of them escorting me to the door, attempting to help me with my bags and bundles.
The big dog sneaking into my room at night when she thinks I haven’t noticed. Wanting to be even closer than within eye-shot down the hall, she sleeps on the cold floor in lieu of her warm padded bed, perhaps because she wants to remind me that although the second dog is cleverer and handsomer and the newest dog is the littlest and most pleasant to have jump up on the bed with me, she was the very first and has known me for the longest. She has put up with intruders—both these two canine upstarts and the one human one who entered my house and stole my house guest’s laptop years ago when she was my one and only!
And although I am allergic to them, I wash off the licks of thanks that Morrie gives for a few cuddles on the bed before he sinks down to the foot to curl at a more hypoallergenic distance. Wash off my hands and arms after I’ve pulled off clumps of Frida’s thick undercoat. Dress the wounds that Diego’s claws have left on my legs and arms when he just can’t resist jumping up for closer contact. All of these wounds and welts and sneezes and wheezes just the aftermath of the constant thanks these kids adopted from the streets offer every day, as often as I will allow them.