Saturday, April 30, 2005

Gentle Soul; Big Mouth

Though all three dogs are gentle at heart (it's a Lab trait), Elsie has our softest touch. Certainly, Baxter and Ridge treat us with care and sensitivity, but Elsie's interactions are consistently tender and sweet.

You'd think by the way she soothingly leans against us and softly gives us kisses that she'd be our quiet, peace-filled, genteel little lady.

Think again.

Elsie, by far, has our biggest mouth. Her bark sounds more ferocious than Ridge's (whose bark is high-pitched and soft for a male); she yaps far more often than our Baxter; and she eats the most digusting things (cat poop, for instance).

And her yawn (see photo above). Her yawn...boy, oh to describe it. The last time I saw a yawn so big and tongue so long was when we were on safari in Africa (literally). A male lion we caught on film lounging on a termite mound opened his mouth to yawn when we were but 20 feet from him. His mouth was nothing short of cavernous.

Elsie could compete with Mr. Lion for Grand Canyon Mouth of the Century.

Who would have guessed: this petite, mannerly, tranquil epitome of docility has a mouth as big and husky as comedien/singer Carol Channing's (I'm dating myself here).

LOL. It's so incongruent. And it's so like Elsie.

But she knows how and when to use use mouth. And use it, she does, appropriately. Elsie never uses her mouth to wound; she only uses it to greet us exuberantly, to say hello to neighbors, or to lovingly alert us to dangers and foes.

If only people showed such restraint; if only we'd stop wounding each other with words and use our mouths in only appropriate, up-lifting, benifitting-others ways.

We have so much to learn.

'Til next time,

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