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The short-haired middle-aged dog trots—shall I say doggedly?—right alongside my advancing automobile. For a moment we are progressing at the same speed, but my metal monster wins the race and leaves Mr. Mutt behind.

In the rearview glass I can see him diminished but unwavering in his journey.

He is focused and quite unaware of me and my vehicle. He is on a quest.

All I can think is, Just how does a dog with a mission wind up? Where is it that a dog has to go?

Like a white rabbit, is he late and flustered?

Do dogs have appointments?

How will he know when he has completed his trek?

What stories will he tell his pups when he returns?

And what if he is wondering the same things about me and my species?

And will we ever communicate with one another on a level playing field? Are we destined to be Us and Them, Alien and Other?

Can we co-exist and simply get off each others’ cases and just live out our lives on a beautiful but damaged planet?

Scientists know that there are bunches of planets nearby that could be as sustainable as ours. If there are sentient beings scattered about the galaxy, are they better than us? More vicious than us? Do they even care whether they ever meet us?

Do they have appointments and pups? Do they get along?

Or are they, like us, trapped within their own domains, faced with trying to find a way to live out their time with the least pain and most caring they can muster?

Or are they, are We, just figments in a cosmos that, like Mr. Mutt, is not even aware that we suspire?

Maybe we will always be able to view afar, imagine afar, dream dreamy dreams of what could be, always planted in our fertile imaginations…but forever separated and forbidden by physics from visiting one another.

And maybe, just maybe, we will someday learn to be satisfied with this idea.

Maybe someday we will decide, To heck with it—let’s just take care of each other, let’s just behave, let’s just enjoy the ride, with or without the metal monsters

(c) Jim Reed 2017 A.D.




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