Ann Patchett Tells Dog-Love Like It Is
September 5, 2012 § 17 Comments
This is just a quick post to say, go buy the latest issue of Vogue. It looks like this:
Now, I know what you’re thinking. Why should I buy a magazine with a picture of Lady Gaga dressed as an electrified disco mermaid on the cover?
That is a fair question.
Here’s why: Because I can’t find a link to share with you any other way Ann Patchett’s fantastic essay, “The Sense of An Ending.” Dog people (of which I am one) will appreciate her remembrances of her pooch, Rose. (Maybe even cat people? I don’t know. That’s hard for me to say, because cats make me wheeze until I can’t say anything at all.) Just-plain-people will enjoy it for Patchett’s astute observations about pet and human relationships in general.
“I came to realize… that there was between me and every person I had ever loved some element of separation, and I had never seen it until now. There had been long periods spent apart from the different people I loved, due to nothing more than circumstances. There had been arguments and disappointments, for the most part small and easily reconciled, but over time people break apart, no matter how enormous the love they feel for one another is, and it is through the breaking and the reconciliation, the love and the doubting of love, the judgment and then the coming together again, that we find our own identity and define our relationships.
Except that I had never broken from Rose. I had never judged her or wanted her to be different, never wished myself free from her for a single day.”
Note: If you’ve experienced the loss of your dog very recently, you may especially love it, but you might need to tuck it away to read later, not right now. Or maybe you’re tough enough to read lines like this without sniffling at your desk:
“Sometimes love does not have the most honorable beginnings, and the endings, the endings will break you in half. It’s everything in between we live for.”
Anyway, buy the magazine. It’s worth the $5.99 for that essay.
PS: The essay is Rose’s second appearance in Vogue. The first time, when she was but a pup, was in “This Dog’s Life,” which you can read in its entirety here.