Plenty of love in the poop home

The Compass - - THE COMPASS -

Love can be mea­sured in poop. Truly. Con­sider the new­born hu­man who has just ar­rived on this planet, poop­less.

Con­sider the new baby’s mammy anx­iously await­ing her dar­ling’s first-ever of­fi­cial poop.

Con­sider the ar­rival of that ini­tial poop. Con­sider its ap­pear­ance, lit­er­ally, and pic­ture Mammy, her in­fant’s health and wel­fare in mind, ex­am­in­ing the brand new poop for colour and tex­ture and vol­ume and any other char­ac­ter­is­tics that ex­hibit poop’s … well, pu­rity, I s’pose.

Sat­is­fied the poop is per­fect, Mammy lov­ingly clasps her off­spring to her bo­som. If she were be­ing sketched, the artist would likely doo­dle a drift of sparkling hearts above mother and child.

Al­beit wel­come, be­fore squeez­ing baby in her arms, I s’pose Mammy would dis­pose of the poop by de­posit­ing it where even cher­ished poop is des­tined to be con­signed. Into the poopy di­a­per pail, eh b’ys? “Harry!” “Oh poop!” said I in a whis­per too low for Dear­est Duck’s ears to hear.

Over my shoul­der Dear­est Duck read not only my few scrib­bled lines and the spa­ces in be­tween but also, so it seemed, my very mind.

“I know what you’re go­ing to say. You’re go­ing to talk about run­ning the poop home,” she said, lov­ingly ca­ress­ing my neck and sweetly kiss­ing my nog­gin. See, love can be mea­sured in poop. Rather than strug­gle with the chore of edit­ing th­ese scrib­bles, for the sake of ac­cu­racy I’m go­ing to re-write my open­ing sen­tence right here. A mother’s love can be mea­sured in poop. Imag­ine the first cou­ple of years of a new hu­man’s life and the bulk of poop pro­duced. As well, pon­der the poop’s aro­matic at­tributes; its vis­cos­ity; the gluey­ness with which it ad­heres not only to a dis­pos­able di­a­per but also to baby’s flesh in ev­ery crack and bot­tom dim­ple.

Only a mother can fist into that mess day-af­ter-day and still love the poop’s pro­ducer.

Yes, I know, fa­thers too help carry the load, so-tos­peak, but to in­clude them would re­quire another re­vi­sion of my open­ing state­ment.

Oh, dou­ble-poop, triple-poop. It turns out I have to re­vise my topic sen­tence any­way.

Here goes: A mother’s love can be mea­sured in dog poop. Re­cently, I saw writ­ten proof of this uni­ver­sal truth. Truly. The proof was printed in coloured let­ters on a Mother’s Day card, one of those hand­made cards ele­men­tary school teach­ers have their pupils con­struct for said ma­ter­nal oc­ca­sion.

I saw the card propped on a man­tel­piece in a young mother’s liv­ing room. Cu­ri­ous, not nosey as Dear­est Duck would likely say, I picked it up, glanced at the frilly heart on its front and spread it open: Mommy, I Love You Be­cause … The rea­sons were listed un­der­neath: • you hug me when I’m hurt; • you feed me de­li­cious food; • you buy me pretty clothes; • you read me bed­time sto­ries; and, • you run the poop home. See that last one? You run the poop home! Need­less to say, I saw that one as my favourite rea­son for lov­ing Mommy.

I can’t re­sist rep­e­ti­tion at this point: Why wouldn’t a child love Mommy for run­ning the poop home?

I tried to imag­ine the specifics of the ac­tion that gen­er­ated such love. Mommy lug­ging poopy di­a­pers home to the di­a­per burial grounds? Mommy sneak­ing out the back door of a friend’s house with a poopy di­a­per and dash­ing back home to dis­pose of its con­tents on … well, on home turf, so to speak? Mommy scur­ry­ing home from the play­ground, poopy di­a­per hoisted like a tro­phy. Not to lodge it, as if on a pedestal, on the man­tel­piece, I hoped.

“Harry, you’re be­ing dis­gust­ing!” said Dear­est Duck, a mea­sure of love ab­sent from her eyes.

Re­plac­ing the card on the man­tel­piece, I asked the Mommy the sig­nif­i­cance of the poopy love.

This is what she said. “Mary [real name with­held for my own pro­tec­tion] promised to care for her new puppy, in­clud­ing scoop­ing up Rover’s [real name with­held again for my pro­tec­tion] poop. The very first time we took Rover for a walk around the block, he pooped on the cor­ner. Mary cried and re­fused to scoop the poop. What could I do? While Mary waited, I scooped the poop into a bag­gie and ran back home to toss it in the garbage.”

See, a mother’s love can be mea­sured in dog poop, eh b’ys?

Thank you for read­ing. And, if you must, run the poop home.

— Harold Wal­ters lives Hap­pily Ever Af­ter in Dunville, in the only Cana­dian prov­ince with its own time zone. How cool is that? Reach him at gh­wal­

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