The Wisdom of a Dog

A man read in a novel that
a dog never, ever forgets its
abuser and that on its death
bed, the dog will growl if
the abuser comes near.
The man hadn’t heard a growl,
but remembers how the
dog bowed its head, not in
reverence but fear,
as the man drew near
to say goodbye
with a tear.
In that moment, he wondered
if he would ever be free
of the shame that he confessed
with an earnest plea
for forgiveness from the
dog and the dog’s
compassionate creator, Thee.
The man looked down at
man’s best friend beside
him, placed his hand on
the dog’s head
and the dog didn’t
bow but instead
lifted his head
and addressed the
man’s melancholic
mood, “Enough
with all the self-pity;
you have been more
than good and loving
to me
and the previous three.
The question
for you is, having been
forgiven by the dog’s
creator, Thee,
can you forgive
yourself and then have
compassion for those
who like you have fallen
far short of the glory
of the creator reflected in
the innocent dog of long ago?”
The man looked at the dog
and simply said, “I hope so.”

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