Afew months ago, the morning before my eldest brother was to return home to Norway after a long visit, I dreamed that I had just awakened in the early light of dawn to find my dog Roland sitting at the end of my bed, a bar of softly glaucous shadowcast by the central casement frame of my double windowdraped over his shoulders like a prophet’s mantle. Roland is of middling size, with a shorthaired coat of mottled white, brown, and black, and a handsome face with a coal-black nose and deep brown eyes. I recognized at once the profound melancholy in both his posture and his expression. “What’s wrong?” I said, after a moment of uneasy silence.
He slowly shook his head, and thenin a voice plangent with sadnessreplied, “I have to leave you. I have to go to Norway with your brother.”