by Chantel Lavoie

That summer he moved into the house where she had raised her children. He brought with him patience, self-knowledge free of ego, minor flaws that come from living too long alone. Strong hands willing to pull weeds. Height to reach the top shelves. A warm laugh. Also, two dogs.

She had not chosen to live with dogs, although she’d grown up with them. Farm dogs—who stayed outside—kept away coyotes and skunks, tangled with porcupines then ran howling across the prairie yard, noses needle-pierced so that her father had to take pliers to the quills. No one […]