The book, Merle's Door, is the story of a freethinking dog. I'm only about halfway through the book, but I'm finding it charming.
Merle loves music. He seems to especially love radio show theme music. I just had to share this part that made me laugh out loud, as well as choked me up.
But no radio rendition of coyotes, no guitar or banjo music, not even a dozen human voices singing "Happy Birthday" could compare to what became Merle's enduringly favorite piece of music. The first time he heard it he was lying by the Christmas tree. As its opening bars sounded, he threw himself to his feet, eyes stunned with wonder and disbelief. Tossing back his head in the most energetic demonstaration I had yet to see of his musical passion, he caroled along to the "Hallelujah Chorus" of Handel's Messiah, his mouth nearly coming unhinged. He did not stop: "King of kings, and lord of lords." "Yow, yow, yawoooo."
He accompanied every "And he shall reign forever and ever," every "Hallelujah," until the monumental final chords when--voice cracking and tail lashing so hard that I feared it might break off--he looked up at me with an angelic and spent expression, as if to say, That is the most sublime music I have ever heard."
I'm with Merle. Sublime.
I will have to reconsider when Willy is in the south 40 at night, barking, barking, barking at who knows what, and then breaking into a soft soprano howl. Is he singing? Or is he just so upset over the fact that nobody has come out to see what he is barking about, that he tries a new tactic. Willy sings the blues? I don't know. But it always works. We stop what we're doing, and listen, then laugh. Then we go out to see, because it is so darned cute!