My dog is deaf, and I whisper when I want to communicate with him. I find lowering the timbre of my voice accentuates the movement of my mouth. My dog is smart; he can lip read.
My cat, on the other hand, is blind. He is a work in progress.
In real life, Steven’s dog feigns deafness, and his cat is merely short-sighted, but both are willing to play along in aid of dramatic effect.
Dusty bounded into my life, like a golden bone lay hidden inside me. Our ritualistic greeting never failed to cheer my weary spirit.
Dusty is gone now but sometimes I picture God laughing, tossing that tennis ball over the Pearly Gates. Dusty pounces and returns with eyes full of adoration.
Eileen McIntyre is a writer from Northern California, who sometimes listens when voices speak.
I was told you can’t call dogs “pets” anymore. It connotes inferiority to the rest of the family. They should be “furry companions.”
I asked the owner of an adored Westie whether he considered Gus inferior. His response: “Haven’t saved for his college, and we don’t let him read books.”
Barbara Mende writes and does other paperwork in Cambridge, MA.
I named my dogs Verlaine and Rimbaud, both mutts who liked getting into other people’s garbage.
They weren’t well-mannered or well-kempt, but friendly in a panhandler sort of way, inseparable in their shakedowns. Yet those probing eyes… They were enough to turn even the most calloused soul into a poet.
Jim Doss lives with his wife and three children in Sykesville, Maryland, and earns his living as a software engineer. He has previously published two books of poems: Learning to Talk Again, and What Remains. In partnership with Werner Schmitt, he also published a book of German translations entitled The Last Gold of Expired Stars: The Complete Poems of Georg Trakl 1908 – 1914. In his spare time, he is an editor for the Loch Raven Review.
The kitten sinks its teeth into my leg for the millionth time.
It ignores me.
“I was gonna give you a cool name, but from now on you’ll be called Princess Fluffylumps the Third!”
The male kitten blinks.
“Don’t push me. Or the glittery pink collar is next.”
E.O. is making a first attempt at a humorous fiction novelette called Id/entity, which, if it doesn’t suck, might actually see the light someday on Amazon Kindle. If not, EO will probably make some nice origami, or a LOT of paper footballs.
Cuddling that bright morning. Our relationship
had been called lovingkindness by Buddha himself
one ancient morning as the Morningstar appeared.
Like enlightenment, her eyes flashed,
kidneys failing: her urine ran clear like water.
My startled response frightened her.
Yet her eyes said, it’s okay,
see you next time my love.
Matthew lives in Maine. He still remembers the day his son called from school. His student teacher had brought three kittens in a cardboard box from her dorm. “Please, can I bring one home?”
Oh God, it’s done! The adoption is finally complete!
There she sits, a cute seven year old, her face filled with hope and questions.
Oh God, what have I done? Can I really provide the loving, forever family home she deserves?
What do I know about raising Jack Russell Terriers?
John Keeley is the new guardian of seven year old Storm, and is wondering about the trust our pets put in us.
Not to be outdone by Grandma’s cat, who slathered a gob of squirrel viscera upon the sidewalk, Boon whined at the screen door. Usually it was dross—holey sock, long-gone bones—but something’s different today: a tobacco tin with old coins, curled Greybacks.
Good dog, I say, over and over.
Leigh Ward-Smith is a writer, editor, and amateur duck-wrangler with a passion for literature in its many forms. Her work has been published in or is forthcoming for The Ghouls’ Review, 52nd City literary magazine, and the Bikes in Space fiction anthology. When not reading, parenting, or being outdoors, she can most likely be found blogging at Leigh’s Wordsmithery.
In spite of your exalted status, you are not invited to sit at the dinner table.
We will not save you a chair or set a place for you, and you will not be considered a centerpiece.
I left the letter on the table where I knew she’d find it.
Candace writes from a comfy chair since the cat is using the table.
There never needed to be smoke to signal a fire for Rodrigo.
News reports, assumptions, stereotypes; call him jaded, but with most things the cynicism served him well.
But he never questioned her. She was pure. Gentle. Perfect. His refuge. A confidante. A companion. The one.
The finest Chihuahua ever.
Rob Goss is a Tokyo-based writer. Learn more about him at tokyofreelance.com.