We called him the loneliest dog in the world. On Exeter Street, behind our apartment building, we would see him shivering. Tim, my brother, thought the dog was a greyhound because it was thin and had a long, narrow skull. “No,” said Donald, my oldest brother, “it’s too short. It’s just a skinny mutt.”
For a time we thought the dog lived in a house that we could see from the kitchen window of our apartment. Tim paid more attention than Donald or I and figured out that the dog never went inside that house. “It goes onto that house’s porch,” he said, “to get out of the wind.”
The dog had a collar, but it never got close enough for us to read it. It wandered all around our neighborhood. Some days we would see it on Murray Avenue, lying with its head on its paws on the sidewalk across the street while we waited for the bus.
Mostly the dog just shivered and yawned. Sometimes as it yawned a high-pitched whine came out. I said it was like his teeth were a choir and they sang when the sun hit them…
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