Thursday, September 10, 2015

Dead dogs

We started watching Wilfred on Netflix last year, but, as happens in every house, we couldn't agree on it. I wanted to continue the binge, but I got overruled. I finally got back to finishing it in the last week or so. Damn. If I ever have to (((SPOILER ALERT!!!!!!!!)))) cry on command, I'll think about putting down one of the dogs we've had to put down. I strained in my memory, and I think I can just remember one poem from those I had published a long time ago. It's the only poem of the hundreds of bad ones I wrote that I can mostly remember:

To an Old Dog

It's not that we meant to treat
you with any unkindness, tethering
your life to an arm's breadth and a
half of our own. But now that all your bones
ache and with your total blindness,
what could it hurt to leave you, un-
collared, to hobble and urinate on the grass?

Do not remember when we held you back
your puppy neck barely straining the line
and think that only now we've let you go
when you are too old for walks or chasing sticks.
Do not remember, best friend
of man and of so many days, these ironies,
nor think us up to our old tricks.

I can't remember who published it. There are thousands of online poetry journals, and I assume many fold before long. This one is gone, because I haven't been able to find it for years. Oh, that dog, though. I remember the dog this was about.

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