Two Dogs

by | Dec 8, 2020 | Issue Eighteen, Poetry


as of tomorrow as of today as of right now we are lost in the woods’ brown leaves parchment paper grateful for the perpetual churning beneath our feet well aware of tonight’s frost warning more signs pointing to us maybe getting past all this


the larger issues of these particular times have been well

covered elsewhere but this year also overnight a black bear

ripped the birdfeeder from its wrought iron crook engraving

matching slashes in the greening copper casing

while a rat hunkered down in the corner of the basement

workshop taking to our stockpile of white rice and canned beans

showing up now and then only in our peripheral

vision so we could never be sure

and how the sickly deer drowned

themselves one after another

drawn to the lake

for fever relief


up on the meadow where the town’s yellow bulldozer destroyed the trees and shrubbery,

all the wildflowers I cannot name—

            where eastern bluebirds and goldfinches bounced over milkweed and wandering                    butterflies rested before moving on

            where once a golden eagle flew over me majestic wings beating

            above violet puffs of chicory and ripe goldenrod

            lifting me up into a blue sky  

            brimming with cumulous        clouds for a moment

do you believe that

            there was a knoll by the old silo where I could stand and face

            a certain direction


            become restored

well they have flattened it all

for a soccer field complex

they’ve been working on for months

running a generator early in the mornings that vibrates through the walls and my pillow


everyone is letting their hair go gray

bruising their ribs

shrinking away


I go to the woods

to look for reassurance that time

is passing all the while

echoes of golden wing-beats

thrum against

my ear drums

my companion these days—one dog

or another.

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