Barn swallows dipped and dived. Cows mooed in the pastures. Gray draped the clearcuts. It was just me and Bonnie along the trail that paralleled the river and the current seemed more pond than river.
I noticed fresh gopher mounds. Young Sitka spruces sported lime-green buds. Beads of water clung to leaves and branches.
Clyde was gone from our lives, but not really. No more Rolling Stones tongue. No more fiendish moves to procure treats. No more preposterous whimpering for treats.
Things die and you must adjust. I died two years ago, an extinction of self, and I’ve adjusted and continue to adjust. There is no final adjustment.
We passed the spot where I had a snowball fight with Clyde. I felt ready to cry so I did.
I thought of all the deep spiritual sickness in my country, and how Clyde and this river provided me an antidote.
Bonnie and I talked as we reached the river. I fed her treats. Everything seemed so concise at the moment so I pulled out my notepad and wrote with concision.
I returned Bonnie to the house and walked to the car. I heard howling from inside the house, a strange sound not heard in all my previous visits. It had to be Bonnie because she was the only large dog in the sanctuary capable of producing that volume. The howling continued until I got inside the car and drove away. I felt like howling myself.
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