I don’t know what Fred was looking at, but the Aurora Borealis shining over the path was holding my attention one evening as we sat on the porch of my cabin. I pointed Fred’s head in the direction of the lights. He didn’t seem interested. He was to get his own dog house, a fancy one, since I had spare lumber. He would also get the required chain to make sure he didn’t chase my neighbor’s sheep when he grew up. I would eventually learn that Fred had as much interest in those sheep as he did in the aurora, but my neighbor’s purebred puppy, Princess, still too young to breed, was on his mind.

How do I know she was on his mind? Well, I don’t, and I would like to think he was still too young to be thinking about her, but he wasn’t interested in the aurora. He wasn’t interested in those sheep and she was barking in the distance. Civilized people normally introduce their dogs while walking through some nice park, but with my neighbor worrying about his sheep and what Fred might do to Princess, we never introduced them. “You should have that dog neutered,” he once advised. He was right, but I package my mistakes in boxes of reason and wrap them with brightly colored righteousness expecting only joy. I thought to myself that I wouldn’t want someone doing that to me, but I did, eventually, build that dog house and chain Fred. Thinking back on that peaceful evening with the aurora dancing in the sky, I suspect Fred knew everything he needed to know about Princess and she was, at least for the moment, glad I wasn’t going to neuter him.


Written for dVerse Haibun Monday. 
Photo: "Covering" by the author
Hear the author read this haibun on SoundCloud.


Author: Frank Hubeny

I enjoy walking, poetry and short prose as well as taking pictures with my phone.

21 thoughts on “Aurora”

  1. Ahhh Fred, did you like being chained? Somehow, i think the heart of a warrior wolf still beat within you. I love the haiku at the end. And I would love to know more about Fred. I like your thoughts on Fred and Princess. It seems to me, perhaps the farmer should have had Princess spayed. After all, fair is fair.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I thought it was unfair as well, but he wanted to breed Princess to a respectable purebred dog and sell purebred puppies. Whatever Fred was, he was far from purebred. My neighbor was only a hired hand of a real dairy farmer. He one day wanted to raise animals commercially himself and have his own farm. He owned only a few sheep and a beef cow. All this happened decades ago. I hope he was successful.


  2. This is awesome. I’m crazy in love with this section:

    “I package my mistakes in boxes of reason and wrap them with brightly colored righteousness expecting only joy.” You made the middle-schooler in me giggle with your package/box word play! Plus, “brightly colored righteousness” might very well be condoms. 😛 And although your haiku is gorgeous, I’m giggling over the innuendo in that too. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you! That phrase came to me as a woke this morning. I thought that was the central idea of the haibun and maybe the only reason I bothered posting it. I’m glad you liked it.


  3. Aaaah, I can sympathise with you and Fred there… but I love the way you try to get him interested in the Northern Lights. A bit like me and my (human) boys, when they would much rather watch CGI effects or videogames.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I wish I can see those northern lights ~ I enjoyed your story about Fred and the princess as if you can read their minds, smiles ~ I also admire your haiku with the white frosting ~ Snow is upon us as well so I can relate to the leafless trees.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you! I can no longer see the northern lights where we live today. It is difficult even seeing many stars with all the light pollution, but there is always something interesting to see.


  5. Frank, this line is a keeper: I package my mistakes in boxes of reason and wrap them with brightly colored righteousness expecting only joy. I want to print that out and hang it somewhere I can see it. Lots of packages under this lady’s tree!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Björn! I will try to keep adding haibun to fill in the details. Since these things all actually happened, but long ago, my main problem is remembering clearly what did happen. The prompt helped. At first I didn’t think I had anything to fit the prompt this week, but then I realized I did.


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