Friday, April 3, 2009

"Between the Living and the Dead" or..A funny Thing Happened in the Graveyard Last Night

Okay, I have every intention of completing the thoughts I shared in the previous blog, but felt this was interesting; first, let me be clear; I have a great respect for those of mankind who've passed on, and would never intentionally mess with anything in a cemetary. I don't have any fear of graveyards mind you, and really find them quite peaceful at night.

Tonight around midnight my dog Lucky and I were on our usual walk in the dark. We live off a country road where that late at night cars are few, if any, and Lucky and I enjoy the quiet, the darkness, and the freedom to use the whole road. Midway through our walk we pass a pretty church cemetary and most often don't go in. When we do I see many old family names from our country community and we're careful to respectfully walk between the sites. Tonight as we passed I noticed a change and decided to see what it was; something unfamiliar in the usual "stoney" landscape. As we got closer I saw that there was a large pile of dirt and next to it a perfectly straight, well-cut, empty tomb. I let Lucky off her leash to look around, and crouched down to peer in, turning on my flashlight to take it in....thinking for a moment about life, death, and everything in between.

I don't know about you, maybe it's a guy thing; when we find a big hole in the ground, we naturally want to jump in. Yeah, you're thinking I did, right? No, I thought, this place is for someone else. I will let it remain that way. As I walked away I saw the gravestones of two young men I knew; neighbors whose lives on the earth were far too short. I paused to remember their faces and walked on.

At the place where the grass ended and the road home began I stopped again to wait for Lucky to catch up. She usually plods along, sniffing here and there, and in time I always see her dark shape come out of the shadows. If she is very pokey, as tonight, I may need a call or two, or a couple whistles. A few more tonight and no sign of her as I grew a little impatient. It was about 40 degrees out. I waited a minute longer and started retracing my steps back to the empty grave and sure enough, as I got closer I could hear a soft, muted whimper. Somehow, whether by design, or error, there was Lucky staring up at me nervously from the now not-so-empty hole with no way out.

Dang it! This dog is about 11 years old and weighs around 85 pounds. She is not going to jump out of that grave. The only way she is coming out is if I go in. (to be continued)

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