prompt: empty, title: a perspective of matter in misc. flash fiction

  • Aug. 8, 2022, 8 p.m.
  • |
  • Public

The family dog Ollie is thirteen or fourteen, hard to know with rescues, and at this point in life is almost totally blind. It doesn’t get him down, other than doggiebetes, he’s hale and hearty for his age. He borks at the thunders and he borks at the fireworks and he borks at the scent of the local strays, utterly convinced he’s protecting us. I’m happy to allow him the strength of his delusions, he deserves it. He’s a deeply weird boy but he’s also a very good boy. He belongs in my family.

He arrived from the Herkimer Humane Society with the name “Ollie” as that was the sound of his nervous yodel when he was young. “Ollie-ollie-ollie!” he would yelp when my mom was too far from the car he sat in. “Ollie-ollie-ollie!” he would scream when he saw one of the neighbor cats outside the window, possibly coming to take the love of his humans or, worse, his kibble. I tend to believe that his name’s “Oliver Quentin Poopenshiz”, as he loves defecating in shoes and similarly loves licking feet, like the director Quentin Tarantino but then, I just adore extra words.

Without much of his sight left, we spoil his other senses. He gets many a scratchin’ and oodles of doggie massages. He’s lavished with food, fresh hamburger meat and turkey cold cuts as garnish atop his dry meals. He’s sung to incessantly, you have no idea how many mediocre classic rock songs I’ve turned into odes toward the tiny Olliebear. But more than anything else, he feasts on the scents of the world, so I walk him whenever I can and open the windows whenever driving with him. He deserves it, of course, as I tell him often, he protects us so well.

I take him for walks, long walks, where all he has to tell him where he is are the pads on his feet and the sniffs in his snout. I wonder what, without that sense, Ollie is actually able to understand about the world around him. What threads his nose weaves from the stinks, without those empty eyes, inside his fuzzy little brain. As a human, in ways, I know so much more about the world than he does, but in some ways, he understands this reality in a manner I could never fathom.

I wonder if that’s how God might look upon us, look upon how we see the world. Blind as we are to the macro levels of galaxies or the microscopic sub-atomic spins, we do not see the world disappear in blinks. We are synched to the little things, the tiny feelings, the glorious moments that are already minute to us, perhaps impossible to perceive at all, up there in eternal heavens.

I wonder if God would talk about my charming blind-spots the same way I talk about this little blinkered dog. I hope that She or He might consider me a good boy despite my flaws as well.

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