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Puppies and Boys, A Boy-Mom’s Musing

December 12, 2012

She was one of six, a litter of round-bellied puppy piglets with black snouts and flop ears, needle teeth mouthing fingers, tails and toes. Her litter-mates would yelp at the nips, then return to the fray, mouths open, tails wagging, tussling and tumbling until they collapsed, exhausted, on top of one another, upside down, like fallen warriors on the field.

The world was her jungle-gym, our Heidi-girl, who looked for an excuse to play, to catch, to keep away in every encounter. Her puppy-long legs and out-sized paws gamboling down the sidewalk, over the couch, across my lap. Tongue lolling, tail wagging, happy joy joy doggy that she was.


The sky was soft as we left the house, pink to the west, stars to the east sleepily blinking. The lights flickered on, house by house, down the street as we wandered, hand in hand, the boys ahead, stopping at each winter-wonderland to ah and gape at angel wings and snowmen, toy trains and icicle lights

The restaurant was full, but not crowded. We sat on the patio by the open flame heater, the boys shouting “20 Questions” over Greek sandwiches and French fries. I tried to shush them, but so thrilled by the walk they could not be shushed. Hungry mouths and laughter, we finished our meal then headed for home.The air grew snappish as the pink light faded, tugging hoods up over ears and cheeks.

The puppy-boys ahead of us tumbled on, stumbling over their feet and each other, shoving and tussling over the sidewalk.

They’re bonding, you know. he whispered.

I know, but I still cannot grasp it, these physical, rowdy beings, flesh of my flesh, yet so foreign to my femininity, to everything I’ve ever known, or thought, or done.

We nearly stepped on one who had tripped and was flat on the sidewalk before us in the dark. Kissing away tears and bruised palms, rubbing at knees for moments before he galloped away, off to stand in the glow of the snowman ahead, brightly on the neighbor’s lawn.

The glow of the ligths shone on rosy cheeks, tousled hair. Exquisitely beautiful and manly, these puppy-like men, whose arms and legs never seem to keep up with the pumping joints and beating hearts.


The tumble, and tussle, and roar. More physical than verbal, they communicate with actions over sounds, and sitting still is not merely punishment, it is a crime.

They greet me like a long-lost friend; they nip when they get rowdy. A hug could very well result in bruising, and my lap is always home base, regardless of their size.

Their messes are monstrous, their joy contagious. Happy joy joy they are, even when my hair is all over the floor.

They learn their boundaries, and delight to please. They eat voraciously and sleep even more so.

It is a wondrous thing, bearing this witness. Mysterious and amazing, seeing them grow and evolve and become.

Foreign creatures yet flesh of my flesh, bone of my bone, knit together in my womb, my puppies, my boys.

One Comment leave one →
  1. pastordt permalink
    December 13, 2012 12:16 am

    Absolutely lovely, Adelle. Thank you.

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