Small Conceits

Musings. Stories. Poems.


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Bodhi Makes a Tactical Error

Bodhi: <from the dining room> “Huh. That’s weird.”

Coyote: <from cushion in living room>: “What’s that?”

Bodhi: “Usually when Mom gets mad, she puts us outside. This time, she put me inside.”

Coyote: “What did you do?”

Bodhi: “I don’t know. We were playing ball, and then Mom was doing something, and I went over and laid down to wait.”

Coyote: “OK…”

Bodhi: “And I love my ball. It’s so green and bouncy and-…”

Coyote: “Right, right. You love your ball. But what were you DOING?”

Bodhi: “So I rolled in it, and Mom said something I didn’t really understand-…”

Coyote: “It’s probably just as well.”

Bodhi: “Hey! I think one of the words rhymed with that!”

Coyote: “And, when you started rolling, where were you lying?”

Bodhi: <sighing happily> “Over in the corner. The yummy-smelling corner…”

Coyote: “Where Mom grows her strawberries.”

Bodhi: “That’s the one! They smell so sweet and yummy when you crush them against your fur.”

Coyote: “And then she sent you inside.”

Bodhi: “No, then she picked up the ball and threw it.”

Coyote: “I don’t get it. What happened? Did you chase it?”

Bodhi: “No, I kinda lost track of it. I got distracted for a second.”

Coyote: “By…?”

Bodhi: “Well, I went to chase it, and there was this HUGE bowl of strawberries sitting there, and-…”

Coyote: <rolling her eyes> “Let me guess: You shoved your whole head into it and started eating.”

Bodhi: “YES!” <pause; then, in an awed voice> “How did you know? It’s like…you’re magic!”

Coyote: “OK, so. Some parting words of wisdom for you. First: Leave the strawberries alone.”

Bodhi: “OK.”

Coyote: “Second: Leave the strawberries alone.”

Bodhi: <cocking his head, unsure> “Those sound really similar.”

Coyote: “You noticed that, huh?”

Bodhi: <wagging proudly> “I did!”

Coyote: “You might actually survive a couple of weeks after I’m gone. Now, come over here. I’m too tired to get up and kiss your foolish head.”

Bowl of ripe strawberries