Her long hair flows gently in the breeze. Petite legs moving quickly carry her home. As she moves out of my view I envy the Cat on the high windowsill in the dining room, for he can still see her. Though he has no appreciation for her beauty. Now I must wait.
On the couch I dream. My legs kick. My barks of joy are stifled to a whimper by the paralysis of sleep. I am dreaming of her. Together, we are running through a meadow. We chase after a field mouse, and then tumble over each other, laughing. I discover something smelly, bear scat perhaps. I let her roll in it first, and then I do the same. I hump her, then she humps me. Just as we begin to dine on goose poop I am rudely awakened by the Cat who has once again played the dirty attack-the-tail trick. He will pay.
But he will pay later, for other fortuitous stirrings require my attention. My person has changed her clothes. This is a sign that perhaps the wait is over. She has exchanged plaid pants for black and dropped the ratty looking hooded sweatshirt on the arm of the couch. Then she dawdles and I lose hope.
Eventually she shouts to my other person that she is, indeed, “Taking Ralphie for a walk.” So I do my happy dance, complete with levitation leaps and half-spin bobs.
But she dawdles some more and I have to do it two more times before, finally, she clips my leash onto my collar and we go. I burst out the door and my person is like dead weight that I drag by my neck down the driveway.
But the strength of my love pulls me forward. I must see what messages wait along the curb. My person allows ample time, for she hopes I will poop on our lawn before we walk on, so she doesn’t have to don the plastic bag and do the stoop of shame, carrying my feces home with us. “Hurry up” is the mantra she utters to make it so.
At the end of the driveway, on a weed, I detect essence of rawhide and it saddens me. Won’t the bacteria upset her fair stomach? Can’t her people spring for Nylabone or Dentastix? I sniff on and discover a perverse message on a clump of onion grass. I’m not sure what to make of it and chalk it up to mephitic interference. Now at the far edge of the yard, her first message. Clearly she held back for me. It is pungent, revealing her beautiful, unique biological and social profile. She tells me all I had hoped for, and that she shares my passion for pumpkin treats. I reply over and over again.
After I reward my person for her patience, we walk on. My excitement grows as we approach my love’s house. But my person will not let me leave messages on the finely coiffed lawn, for unlike our lawn there is no hedge, no weeds, no telephone pole, just a lush blanket of green from house to curb. We walk in the middle of the empty street. I strain the leash and listen to the faint sounds of her bark from inside.
“Until we walk tomorrow my love, albeit separately. Steer clear of the onion grass for it is like static on the olfactory radio,” I bark, hoping she will hear.