Death to the Rusty Dodge
Mike Schmitt

The fawn boxer spun like a tire, arms and legs as spokes, over the grill and slung limp over the hood of the Dodge headed in the other direction. She sprawled, mangled in the dirt, face battered unrecognizable, but I knew this dog by the flashy white spots that stretched along her chest. Her auburn eyes pursued me as if I were a vulture circling her death. A bony man in boots and dusty cowboy hat approached as Macha’s head rested on my arm. He took flight to the rusted truck when I used her last breath to scream all twelve pitches.

I grabbed her sagging body by all fours as blood gushed from her flesh and drops of urine trickled onto my jeans. I buried her, but there was not enough dirt and lime to cover the hole that would be left in my mother’s heart.

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