What the World Needs Now is Love, Sweet Love

Love died just before 7:45 on a Tuesday morning, at the exact same time the clock stopped ticking.

“I was crying in class,” said the youngest, an afternoon later. “I was crying and my teacher asked me why, so I told her. She said she was sorry.”

The oldest stayed in bed all day, weighed down beneath the steady stream of his own flowing tears, ignoring texts and whatever was on the TV.

Love, after all, had been his dog.

It had been his fourth birthday, and the two of us had gone to the shelter to find the only gift he wanted, and in doing so, to give one of his own.

The puppy was all licks and wiggles. He was all laughter and plans for their future. For the entire ride home they basked in mutual happiness, and then 11 more years of the same.

What do you want to name the puppy?” I had asked him, our eyes meeting in the rearview mirror.

“Dog Food,” he had replied.

“We’re not naming the dog Dog Food.”

“How about Kitty Cat?” he asked.

“No,” I said.

“How about Kitty Cat Food?” he continued.

“She may not like that,” I said. “Give her a name she can grow into.”

And so he thought for the while, down one street and up another, as the puppy moved in as close to him as only a puppy can, curled up and fell asleep, her nose upon his lap.

“I’m going to call her Love,” he said. And he did.

She grew into every inch of it.

On Tuesday morning Love came in the door like any day, fresh from a long night sleeping against a boy’s legs and a few moments of stretching her own. She had already eaten, played outside, been pet by everyone in the kitchen, and was ready for her regular nap. It was as routine as a sunrise.

Then she walked into the boys’ room, and she died.

The clock stopped.

The tears started.

The shock, I think, is something bound to linger, and our love forever longer.

Love was exactly what we called her, and love was all we ever knew.

The happiness was mutual.

Related Posts with Thumbnails

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

CommentLuv badge

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.