I’ve been thinking. Did I ever tell you that, when the two-legses first came to see me and my family, they wanted to take my brother home with them?
Not as well as, you understand… instead of.
Granted, they hadn’t met me yet… but, because she’d grown up with Red Setters, she really wanted a red dog, and my brothers were all red sort of colours. So, when they came, it was one of them they really wanted.
So they all sat on the grass in the garden with us and played with us for a while. One of my brothers really liked her and would have happily gone home with her, but she does have some sense for a two-legs, and let us do the choosing.
I knew she was mine, straight away. We always know. There is always one human we are supposed to be with, ’cause we have just exactly what they need. And I could see in her eyes that she needed me in her life, so I waddled over and sat on her… it works every time.
So her head was saying she wanted a red dog, but her heart was saying otherwise. It was only later I found out about my predecessor, Echo, her ‘laughing girl’…who looked a lot like me and who had chosen her by waddling over and sitting on her.
She missed Echo a lot.
Now, I knew I couldn’t take the place of the Dog That Went Before… but I could fill the hole in her heart. I just had to show her that it was the right thing to do. I sat on her some more… and she listened to what her heart was saying. And eventually, we came home together, me and the two-legs.
That’s a long time ago now and we are growing old, still pups together… and I think that’s sort of beautiful myself.
Maybe that’s why you matter so much, Santa. Not for the presents and stuff… but because, sometimes, you can fill the holes in peoples hearts and bring a little joy.
I’d like to think we have that in common, you and us dogs.
Anyway… my friend Lilie has a brother too… and she would like to talk to you about that.
Much love, Ani xxx
Dear Santa Paws,
I didn’t get to see you again last year, though I loved the toys and treats you left for me, so thanks for those. Like I always tell everyone, I really love friends and visitors, so why won’t you wake me up to say, “Hello,” when you come bring our toys and treats? I’d really love to meet you. I’ll do my best happy wiggle dance and everything.
Anyway, I’ve been a very good girl again. But I don’t need to tell you that. Mummy says you know if I’ve been good or not, so you’ll know how good I’ve been. I mean, sure, I’ve gotten pretty cranky with my little brother sometimes. But really, Santa Paws, you would if he was jumping on your head, chewing on your ear, and stealing your toys and treats too. Just saying!
So, since I’ve been such a good little Westie girl, I’m sure you won’t mind bringing me some more toys and treats, right? So I want some more balls. Yes, I know I have lots of balls already, but you can never have too many balls. Also, I love those cuddly toys with squeakers in them, so a new one – or two – of those would be great. Oh, and I’d love if you could bring me some treats too, since they’re another thing you can never have too much of in my opinion. I especially love rawhide chewies… Just so you know.
You should probably bring some stuff for my little brother, Logan, too. That way maybe he won’t steal my stuff all the time. I know he keeps being a bad puppy, but he’ll only take my stuff if you don’t bring him something of his own. Besides, he does try not to be a bad puppy… Mostly… Even if he’s not very good at managing it. But trying does count. Mummy says so.
Lots of licks,
About Lili’s To-Legs, Victoria Zigler
Victoria Zigler is a blind poet and children’s author who was born and raised in the Black Mountains of Wales, UK, and is now living on the South-East coast of England, UK. Victoria – or Tori, if you prefer – has been writing since she knew how, has a very vivid imagination, and spends a lot of time in fictional worlds; some created by her, others created by other authors. When she remembers to spend some time in the real world, it’s mostly to spend time with her hubby and pets, though sometimes to indulge in other interests that capture her attention from time to time. To date she has published 8 poetry books and more than 40 children’s books, with more planned for the near future. She’s also contributed a story to the sci-fi and fantasy anthology Wyrd Worlds II.
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Just a few of the many books by Victoria Zigler
If there’s one thing Kero loves more than going for a walk, then it has to be going for a walk that takes him to more than one place. Today his walk will take him both to the park and to the beach. What will he find there? Who will he see? And what will a little dog like him think of it all?
Book 2 – Kero Celebrates His Birthday
It’s Kero’s birthday, and his humans are doing everything they can to make it a special day for him. What will Kero think of all the fuss and attention? And what exactly makes a birthday special for a dog anyway?
Book 3 – Kero Gets Sick
Kero isn’t feeling well at all, and that means only one thing: a trip to his least favourite place in the world… The vet! What will the vet do to make Kero feel better? And will Kero think it was worth the trip to the vet in the end?
Book 4 – Kero Celebrates Halloween
Something strange is going on, and Kero doesn’t know if he’s more confused or frightened. All he knows for sure is that the humans are calling it Halloween. Will Kero be able to make sense of this Halloween thing? Or is it just too scary and confusing for a little dog to understand?
Book 5 – Kero Goes To Town
Kero’s very excited to find he’s going to town with his humans. He’s sure there must be loads of great things to do there, after all the humans go there all the time. But what kinds of things can a little dog do in town? And will it be as much fun as he thinks it will?
Book 6 – Kero Celebrates Christmas
Christmas is here, and with it comes snow and Santa Paws – whoever he is. What will Kero think of the snow? Will he be able to make sense of all the holiday activity? And will he be able to stay up long enough to catch this mysterious Santa Paws?
Book 7 – Kero Crosses The Rainbow Bridge
Kero is sicker than he’s ever been before, and has been for a while now. It looks like it’s time for another trip to the vet. But this time Kero’s human won’t be bringing him home; it’s time for Kero to cross the rainbow bridge! What does this mean? And what will Kero find on the other side of the rainbow bridge?
This is the final book in the “Kero’s World” series, and tells the story of the saddest and very last chapter in the life of a beloved dog, as he goes to the place where all of us must go eventually.