Daisy on pretence

I give Daisy a cuddle. Snuggle up to her silky dog ears. I’m glad you’re real, I whisper, and not … pretend. I should have known then that we’d have a problem. What do you mean by that? asks Daisy. Is it possible for something to be other than what it is? I back out of the snuggle. Now it feels dishonest. I’m afraid so, Daisy, I say. I am sorry to disappoint her. But Daisy is forgiving and offers me a head-butt. Do not be afraid, she says. The only way to live is to pretend to be what you are.