Flashback Friday: Brandy

Flashback Friday: Brandy

The great theologian Woody Allen once said, “I’m not afraid to die; I just don’t want to be there when it happens.”

As a 10-year old boy, I was there when death came calling for Brandy, my precious cocker-spaniel. I was riding the bus. Brandy liked to chase my bus quite frequently. I think it made her feel mighty. Like she was the cause of this enormous yellow contraption running in the other direction. I felt a thump.

“Hmm … I wonder what that was!”

I asked my brother, Smooth. He didn’t know. We disembarked.

A huddle of neighborhood kids began to gather around Brandy at the foot of my driveway. She lay there in a pool of her own blood, struggling, gurgling her last few breaths. I sat dumbfounded.

“I just ran over my dog,” I thought to myself. Maybe I wasn’t the one driving, but I was an accomplice nonetheless. I was partly to blame.

“How can I go on?” I wondered. “How can these people go about their normal lives when Brandy lies here in her final moments?” It was a crushing blow to a young developing soul.

Why did she have to love me so much? Why couldn’t she at least have had some measure of disdain for me, or my bookbag, my middle-school odor, something? – something that would have acted as a deterrent on that fateful day? – that horrid day burned forever in my memory.

If there was one thing I learned in the midst of that tragedy, it’s this:
Skipping school saves lives!

Here’s a traditional haiku poem I just wrote in Brandy’s memory.


Oh, Brandy, you fool.
I miss you. Why did you go?
That fateful day – bleak.

You ran toward death
Unbeknownst to you – big bus.
You fool. Death on street.

I wish’d you’d been smart
Instead, you loved me too much.
The pain. The sorrow.

Sobs. Tears. Time passes.
Less tears now. I’m grown. You’re dead.
There’s no tomorrow.