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Laura Hendrie

Laura Hendrie lives in Colorado. Her story “Armadillo” in the Missouri Review 7.3 was her first publication. [1984]


7.3 Cover


Jun 01 1984


Jack says there’s nothing out here but a lot of nothing, nothing but a lot of space. He says he likes it that way, all sky and dirt spreading out from one side to the next with nothing in between but highway and bean fields and arroyos pointing toward the little black dots that are us. When we drive, he looks straight ahead. He says you’ve got to take things as they come, watch your landmarks, and not want more than what you’ve got to begin with, otherwise you get lost and go blow away like dust. He says if you take what’s there to begin with, then what happens won’t sneak up behind you. That’s why he traps the wild dogs that live down in the arroyo. He brings them home and locks them up in the old Chevrolet out back. Those dogs are so mean you have to poke their food in through the side window with a stick so you don’t get your hand bit off. Slobber and dog fur on the windshield so thick sometimes you can’t see what’s inside, but boy, can you ever hear them when you walk by. Miss Jewel, Tom Go and the rest, they try to keep the dogs off with guns and poison, but Jack traps them alive. Three years ago, a pack of them broke through Miss Jewel’s fence and carried off two pies and her pet chihuahua, but none of them will ever come around our place anymore. They know better than to come sneaking around when they hear their friends yeowling inside the Chevy.