From the distance of a lifetime, a spiral describes it better, but the smaller ones seem circular to me like when walking from one side of the room to the other, turning around and then walking back. Or, walking to the library, standing tall with shoulders back so the air can more easily enter my lungs and my eyes can look right at it, trying to realize, even when I can’t, that everywhere I am still able to go and everything greeting me on the way from sidewalks and apartments to trees and clouds are a gift from or a hint of heaven.
I think in circles as I walk in them. Sometimes I pop those thoughts and sometimes I enjoy them again and again like that ancient story of a man and his dog that keeps coming to mind. Perhaps they died much like my ex-brother-in-law who was found burnt in an apartment fire. His dog stayed with him on his lap. It is them I see walk to the gates of heaven and find that sign, “No Dogs Allowed”. The gatekeeper confirms that there is no problem with him going in, in spite of everything, but not his dog. Since heaven wouldn’t be heaven if one were alone, I see him turn around. He takes his dog and they walk toward a scenic, spiraling path that appears before them and everywhere they go is heaven.
GEESE AND DUCKS RETURN
PEOPLE WALK THE PARK IN TWOS
FLOWERS COMING SOON
Linked with dVerse Pub Haibun Monday hosted by Toni Spencer with the theme “the best things in life are free”.
The farmhouse rests on a flat, grain-growing, dusty, wonderful world. I am three. Outside I want to meet the dog who guards the farm.
Then I am on the ground. Someone says they will shoot that dog. Another stitches my eyebrow and cheek. I did not mean to frighten him.
LAZY BRUSH AND QUIET AIR
LIZARD RUNS AWAY
Written for dVerse Haibun Monday 28.
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.
FLUFFY WHITE FROSTING
CLINGING WET TO LEAFLESS TREES
BERRIES STILL BRIGHT RED
Written for dVerse Haibun Monday.
Photo: "Covering" by the author
Hear the author read this haibun on SoundCloud.