Lord, thank you for dogs.
Thank you for Mocha, my wiry terrier (who is going on sixteen, but remains strong and youthful as ever)
Thank you for her because the other night as I lay in anguish with heavy heart,
as I moved away from her and
reached out to touch the words on the wall
she felt my absence and moved closer so that we would be back to back once more. Her warmth made me cry.
Thank you for the simple
Unassuming love of the dog.
It is the all-encompassing,
Would-give-her-life-for-me-snarling-at-danger-without-a-second-thought kind of love.
Which thrives despite all the times we push them (not lightly) away from our food
Or accidentally step on them
Or smack them for rummaging through the trash
Or all the times (God save us) that we shout and stamp and scream at them for barking protectively at strangers, the very thing they were designed to do.
Thank you Lord for the dog, my dog, a model of how I should love the world.
May she chase squirrels happily all her days.