Play Nice

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[This is where the summary would go if I'd bothered to write one.]

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Love and Santeria

I learned no valuable lesson from the experience. If anything, I believe I lost precious memories. I was as lost today as I was the day I began the project. Perhaps that was my lesson. That one doesn’t fix a hole in one ‘s soul by visiting Madam DuJean and walking away with a handful of books and three chicken livers in a brown paper A&P bag.

While sitting on a park bench staring out at the dark Potomac I came to the conclusion that neither my heart nor my bank account could afford any more of these wacked out solutions. The chicken blood on my hands may have also played some part in the decision-making process.

I turned my attention to the stray dog that had plopped down next to the bench. I’d been unsuccessful in keeping it away from the chicken livers I had placed under the bench. Madame DuJean’s instructions had not covered how to keep away hungry, stray dogs. After some half-hearted “Scat. Shoo! Get away from that,” I’d given up and the dog had at them.

Did it really matter if the chicken livers were under a random bench by the Potomac River or in some stray dog’s intestinal tract, I wondered. Besides, after the light snack the dog had parked itself by the side of the bench. I figured this was close enough.

The dirty river offered no comfort so I turned my attention to the dog. Were this a movie or country song I would have learned some valuable lesson from this animal. The importance of perseverance, perhaps? Felt inspired by its survival instincts, its fighting spirit. Instead the mangy thing disgusted me and reminded me of how tired I was. I placed the books in the bloody paper bag and chucked the package into the water. I grabbed my purse and slowly stood up to leave, my body heavy and comatose. The dog raised its head and gave a small bark. “Yeah. Back at you.”

Published 09/22/02 in Writing • | Views: 2859 times | Print

my head is hurting otherwise i would try and come up with something in response to your poem. for now all i can say is that i pretty much live my life by the motto: hope for the best, but expect the worst.

Posted by patricia  on  09/23  at  05:13 PM

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