TWS #17 — This Dog

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what's to love about an abandoned mangy dog?

There was this dog
Dirty, ridden with fleas
One eye welded shut
that never stopped leaking
and left one brown cheek
dark and matted

I’d see it panting in a vast expanse of dirt
As I walked home from school
Neat and pristine
because I never ventured out
Choosing the library over my own
empire of dirt

The boys at school wanted nothing more
Than to beat me up for choosing books
over them
But I had a trump card
and they never laid a hand on me

I never made it home
As pretty as when I left school
because I played with that mangy dog
The one the others were too afraid 
to approach
With one wandering eye
The hint of insanity in its drool
and the multitude of fleas

I didn’t care about the lack of punches, though
(nice as it was)
Nor did I care about the relieved looks
my father and mother shared
When I came home caked in dirt
and a few scratches from playing

I played with the dog because
it was happy whether I was there or not
I wanted to be close
to the happiest creature I knew

7/22/14
p.s.w.

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