Albino Greyhound

Lisa Smith

This is the second time I have seen an albino greyhound sleeping beside me. And for some reason, none of this scares me. I am the word “lambent.” I do not cry in front of him, nor do I yell. I am completely stable. Not stable really but calm.

This strength or perfection frightens me.

Often I throw up at work, leaning over the toilet thinking of all my co-workers genitals. Sometimes I simply close my eyes and pretend there is really nothing to any of this. Or I am conscious of how I am already putting it all together, giving it a place. Perhaps moving on, unsure of my perfection, then brilliant. Willing my life over to whatever life is willing me, moving me towards the table, towards the bed, towards the hand that is his. Or the space of the hand that is his, which is no longer his.

I have never felt so dazzlingly sad. As if, for the sake of all people, I am a light on a stretcher. That there is health in sickness or bread on top of my refrigerator, I am sure. Still, I can not possibly deserve this fatal healing or sandwiches or something else.

That there are still “gravities” or “voices” or “radishes.” This seems entirely perfect or broken. We remove the light socket from the light, and it is still lit.

He is beautiful and delicately folded into the shape of a sleeping dog. His limbs are made of bone, I think. He is so fragile and white. And again, I have allowed my generosity to overcome me. I am almost waking, and he has given himself up to sleep despite his guard. I am raising myself to my elbow slowly so as not to startle him, leaning over to touch him, with hands that feel like tiny girl hands. His body seems to grow long, white stem from the bed, his torso like a sideways iris. He looks at me. And he has never been so young and so sad. Then he arches into the air and fades there in that arc.