“If Table Legs Could Cheer”

Dogs are allowed in the bar and one night this sharp-tailed sharp-eared dog trotted in, went up to a table and carefully laid underneath.  Then, as if on cue, the dog got up, walked behind one of the men at the table and quiet as a pin lifted his wallet from his back pocket and trotted out the door.  The table legs would have cheered if table legs could cheer because they were privy to the dog’s path.  They saw through the door of the bar, it propped open on this breezy summer night, how the dog met up with a man.  They saw how the man bent down and picked up the wallet the dog dropped on the cracked sidewalk outside the bar.  Saw how the man ruffled the dog’s pointy ears while sliding the wallet into his pocket.  He ruffled the ears of the dog and fed him biscuits which the careful dog didn’t gulp like most dogs do but ate properly and if he’d had a knife and fork and a napkin around his neck he couldn’t have been more neat.  If table legs could cheer they would have approved of the thieving dog because the man whose wallet was lifted is one who kicks at the table legs the most in his excitement for life to begin.

 

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About AJ Atwater

Atwater’s fiction is forthcoming or published in Gravel, Green Mountains Review, PANK, Vestal Review, Nanoism, Literary Orphans, The Gravity of the Thing, Crack the Spine, Cowboy Jamboree:  Harry Crews Tribute Issue and others.