Roger Jones The 2River View, 5.3 (Spring 2001)

Part of a Folk Tale

Thing is, after the man shot the armadillo,
the dog wouldn't let the poor thing lie.
First the man buried it out behind the barn,
out of the dog's sight. Or so he thought.
Somehow the dog found it, dug it up,
left it in the back yard. So the man
re-buried it, this time farther in the field,
and walked off wiping his hands thinking
That's that. But the dog dug it up again,
this time in two pieces, and lay one in the yard.
By now the odor was growing. The man
whipped the dog, and buried the pieces
way out behind the high corn. He leaned
the shovel against the barn thinking That
should do it. But what did he think
that night, as he lay down in the room's
hot summer dark beside his new bride,
and reached across the moonless dark for her
and the death odor began to seep again
through the opened window? Rising,
the man looked out to see the dog panting,
near the porch, on which the seething
formless piece of carrion lay, dug up
once more, and brought back to the house
to lay before the master, like an offering,
under the window of the room where
only a moment before the man
and his young wife lay touching.

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2River All is well.