Old Women and Old Dogs

A tiny micro for your pleasure, with my attached haiku.    This piece is included in my upcoming short story collection with the working title “She Wears Hot Pink Jeans”    (or perhaps “Running Naked in the Mall” or…????)

The following story is currently published in the printed journal of Miracle magazine’s “The Cage” issue #9

Your comments are always welcome.


dogs gate open



sounds of life—

tinkling bells

and a snoring dog


Old Women, Old Dogs


The old lady’s thin gray eyelashes flutter over dim blue irises, one eye squinting in evening light. The fireplace flickers with the hint of an ash or two that sparks to where the old dog naps and burns such a tiny hole in his coat that he just yawns. He whistles and snores like her husband once did. She places slippered feet on the worn velvet sofa and invites the dog up, pushing his largeness away just a little so her feet have room. Rain drips from gutters and pounds the roof like the mighty Colorado in springtime and she’s a girl again listening to that rushing river of lost souls, grounded once more in the Rockies as the river races and pulses.

“I forgot to close the damper,” she says to the dog.  “I’ll get it in the morning.”

Tea tonight tastes too much like cinnamon for a tongue sterile with age, but she drinks it anyway remembering sweetened milk chai savored on the streets of Bombay a few lifetimes ago…perhaps she should add more cream next time and white sugar instead of brown.

Sounds of croaking frogs and the snoring dog weave her thoughts together with the red and blue birds of paradise on the Oriental rug, their eyes turned to where the empty teacup now stands.  She traces frail fingers across her chin and over the soft downy hair that needed plucking last week but today she can’t see to do a basic trim.  She reads at arm’s length shifting her feet this way and that till the dog jumps off the couch and drools on Hemingway’s “Farewell to Arms”.  She picks up the empty cup and recalls a time when it used to be full.

With a groan and a push off the sofa, she shuffles to the stove and boils the water in the pot, letting her face absorb the steaming warmth. The fireplace hisses a little and quiets down, fading out for the night. With a smile and a nod to the past, she meanders to the fireplace, bends down and closes the damper.



Kaye LindenOld Women and Old Dogs