Short stories


One summer, many years forgotten, we survived, penury and poetry, next to a business, with a small sign and no windows, that put down street dogs, killed them with a spike. They used a small amount of poison. The dogs were unwanted because they were deemed strange. Many of the dogs were deformed. I swear I saw one dog that had five legs. My wife still to this day believes I was drunk. Sometimes I would try to communicate with the dogs. I was usually drunk when I thought I could communicate with the dogs. I would bark at the strange dogs and the strange dogs would reciprocate the bark. From our bedroom window as far as the eye could see was monotony and opacity. It was a field of concrete. Upon the concrete were little huts. The strange dogs, both large and small, were kept in the huts until it was time for them to be injected with the poison. The death was elongated because of the penury of the poison. Moribund the strange dogs cried liked abandoned babies. One hot night by the open window, within the cloying heat, I read Rimbaud. The hot air was humming with the scent of the strange dogs. I had the feeling that I was waiting for the circus to arrive, the thought of clowns, elephants, jugglers, acrobats, music and the sweet smell of candy that sends children into raptures filled me with ineffable joy. That summer my wife and I never made love because of the smoke.

Paul Kavanagh

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