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My Pet Poems, Max

My Pet Poems, Max I hopped onto Craig’s List, made a phone call. Next day, with a royal blue, nylon carrier, which had a small, zippered door, sitting on the back seat ready, we drove an hour southeast for this scrawny boy — white with beige/blonde markings on his back and,too, on his amazing, static-charged, flying ears. The first short-nosed dog I’d ever gotten, with quite an underbite. The couple taking our $100 for this shih tsu told us: well, he’d not done well on their farm; was bullied by the other dogs; and was fearful of horses. In turn, I thought: well, who wouldn’t be? This tiny, white fluff of a boy with that pronounced, huffing smile, all teeth from chin to nose. I told Jim on the drive home, “The funniest thing I ever saw.” The vet record the couple gave us was fraud —no such vet. And, apparently, Max had a nerve disorder, too,which sent him into a fit of physical contractions and screaming at any point of any excitement. “He is one for the medical books,” our own vet said, as we tried every approach to help him. He suffered in those fits, as our ears and alarm for him did each and evoery time for over three years, with us finally stopping the meds, simply going to embrace him gently, saying softly, “Max! Max, jt’s all right...” Now, some several years later, the fits are no more...I try not to, but I wonder what horrors he knew on that farm: if the bullying dogs bit him when he screamed? And if the couple tried kicking him out of his fits with their heavy farm boots? My intuitions all but saw it. Oh... This little boy, who became the shadow figure at my feet... like his ancient Chinese-bred ancestors, lying guard before the holy places, and taking off to bark away any possible predators at the door; and, too, lying half-wakeful aside their sleeping monks or the town’s children in case some monster rose out from a dream, or some other need indicated a command. Then, when Gigi came, he became instantly a big brother, as a dog will do it, he always abdicated as she insisted on being so at my side, in her little princess way of wedging her way between. Thus, Max has taken to Jim’s affections and shadows him. The boys there. The girls here. Affection throughout the room! ********. *********. ********. ******** (c)sally Young eslinger 12/23/20 Always Thanks be to God

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Date: 12/26/2020 7:47:00 PM
So glad I read the blogs cause it led me here. Love your story.
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Sally Eslinger
Date: 12/27/2020 5:33:00 AM
Thanks, Rob! The pups are such full stories, seeming to write themselves. I think sometimes the subjects of poetry build their own diaries of phrases that mount til Written. Max is but one.