Saturday, April 9, 2016
A few days ago we'd stopped at one of our stations in the park where a family of crows meet us for lunch (their lunch, that is) when I noticed someone shouting and waving from higher up on a cross path. Since a group of people were passing with their dogs I assumed he was greeting friends and we continued on our way. A few minutes later the young man and his girlfriend caught up with us and, gesturing at the big brown dog they had on a leash, asked if she was ours. Our answer was no, but we patted her and talked to them for a few minutes. They'd found her wandering lost wearing just a collar with no tags. When I asked about the leash he told me it was his belt. I wonder how many young guys wear belts these days? After a few minutes they went off in the opposite direction with the plan of putting a note online before taking her to a shelter. We were kind of sad about the sweet natured beast who appeared to have been abandoned.
Later on our walk we decided to take a different path from one of our usual ones. About ten minutes along it I recognized the big brown dog walking behind a different young couple. As they passed I stopped them briefly to ask how they'd found her and heard, 'She'll go off with anybody'. I should have mentioned she needed some identification but they'd kept on walking and the chance was gone. We were glad to see she'd been reunited with her owners and still just a little bit sad because her owners were idiots. She deserved better ones.
Dharma by Billy Collins
The way the dog trots out the front door
without a hat or an umbrella,
without any money
or the keys to her dog house
never fails to fill the saucer of my heart
with milky admiration.
Who provides a finer example
of a life without encumbrance—
Thoreau in his curtainless hut
with a single plate, a single spoon?
Ghandi with his staff and his holy diapers?
Off she goes into the material world
with nothing but her brown coat
and her modest blue collar,
following only her wet nose,
the twin portals of her steady breathing,
followed only by the plume of her tail.