Snorre & Spot Approach the Fallen Rock


September 29, 2015 by Laird

The man dreamed of his gray, rheumy-eyed dog, missing for many years now.

“I always loved you!” the dog said. “Even when I did wrong!” The dog did not speak as men speak, of course. His notched ears crumpled and he howled. But it meant the same thing.

“I always loved you as well, you incorrigible asshole,” the man tried to answer. He could not speak because it was a dream.

The man awoke and kicked dirt over the ashes of the fire. No more water, no more hardtack or jerky. His snowshoes had gone up as kindling smoke. He leaned his pack and rifle against a tree. He buttoned his coat and tightened the laces of his boots.

Sky and the earth were the same. Cold as the metal of his broadhead axe. Icicles snapped from his beard. Tiny icicle tears snapped from his lashes when he blinked.

The man was no tracker, although he’d lived in the woods and knew how to survive. He limped in ever widening circles along the slope of the mountain and eventually cut across the dog’s trail. Flakes of old blood glittered in the paw prints. North.

He’d followed the prints for a short time when it began to snow.

8 thoughts on “Snorre & Spot Approach the Fallen Rock

  1. Chris Angelucci says:

    I’m so looking forward to your collection of Alaska stories. Thank you for sharing this.

  2. tellmeastorymick says:

    Very nice. I especially like the way he’s circling and perhaps losing a bit of his hold on reality due to the weather or exhaustion or grief. I like the way you show shades of vulnerability in masculinity it stirs up the stereotypes. I liked this in Luke Honey very much.

  3. toddhalfacre says:

    Also looking forward to this.

    These to paragraphs ripped my heart out for two separate reasons. Both equally touching for the right (and wrong) reasons. Brilliant

  4. Spooky Sean says:

    I like that dog speak every line ends with an exclamation mark!
    It rings true.
    Cool excerpt.

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