It’s not a very good picture, this one above, but it does show the relationship between a boy and his dog. There is a certain tenderness that almost makes me weep when I look at it, as I wander through the house trying not to look for Henry.
He was a good dog, one we rescued from a shelter almost twelve years ago. His nose was a bit crooked as he’d been let out on the highway by someone, and he snored rather loudly.
Our mail woman looked at him through the screen when she came to the door once and said, “He’s kind of cute for an ugly dog.”
But ugly lies in the eyes of the beholder.
To us, he was perfect.
He was strange when I came home from teaching on Wednesday night. He stood with his eyes closed, and his head down, in the middle of the living room. He wouldn’t look at me, or anyone, and I knew something was dreadfully wrong.
On Thursday night we took him to the vet knowing that it would be his last ride in the car. It’s a sorrowful journey, that final one, even if it’s “only” for a dog.
I assume he’s playing with Winston, that the two of them are having a happy frolic somewhere in the tall grass.
I thank him for the joy he gave us, the unconditional love I try to emulate in my own life.
Farewell, Henry James. We loved you very much, little one.