B. A. Markus,
"How Can a Dog Help a Goose"

Dedicated and With Thanks to Akeeshoo Sataa of Nunavut and Elma Moses of Cree Nation

Dog is a city dog so she sees all the problems in the world.
And dog wants to fix all the problems in the world.
She’s that kind of a dog.
Dog worries and worries about what she can do to fix the problems in the world.
And eventually Dog decides that her job is to teach all the other animals how to survive in the city.
It is her job to help the other animals learn what to do to stay alive.
Dog is so enthusiastic about her job.
And dog wants to do so much more.
Dog wants to inspire the other animals.
She wants to teach them to succeed in the city.
Dog knows that is how she can solve some of the problems in the world.
Dog is confident that she can do that job.
Luckily soon Dog gets a class.
Her students are Fox, Skunk and Goose, Raccoon, Cougar, and Hummingbird, Groundhog, Rabbit and Mole.
“Dog is here to teach you how to survive in the city,” Dog says in her friendliest voice with not even a little bit of a growl.
The first day at school Dog promises her students, “I will teach you how to survive traffic, and pollution, and noise and all the bad people in the city who are trying to kill you.
I will teach you how to succeed.”
Dog sincerely wants to help every one of her students.
But Dog wants to help Goose most of all.
Because Dog can see all the pain and trouble in the world in Goose.
All the sadness and injustice.
All the terrible, terrible abuse.
Dog sees that Goose is very skinny, and that his feathers are missing in many places, and that the skin underneath is cracked and sore.
Dog tells herself, “The most important animal for me to help is Goose.”
She is happy because now she knows what to do.
She’s sure that helping Goose will solve some of the problems in the world.
Dog is excited about helping Goose because she has always been interested in Goose’s culture.
Dog has always admired Goose’s ability to travel long distances.
Dog even has some Goose feathers in her home.
But Dog also feels guilty about Goose.
Because Dog is a Dog.
And Dog has made fun of Goose, and laughed when the other animals made jokes.
One Halloween Dog even dressed up as Goose and imitated his songs and dances.
And Dog has eaten Goose.
In fact Dog would still like to eat Goose except now she can’t because now it’s her job to help Goose.