methow grist 2011-2014 archive



Crouched in the dog pen
eye to eye
with my hopeful Saint Bernard
I want it to end
any way but this.

Hips and knees sprawled
ghost-white in x-rays
are feeble shadows
that tell me nothing new.
Ball and socket separate,
drifting apart like old friends,
and still he means
every gimping step.

I had hoped for cancer.
in the fur of his neck
a plum-sized growth,
lethal, and real
as a fairy tale’s end.

But it’s just this stupid stumbling
toward the door,
dog determined to come back home,
woman who can’t bear the load
anymore of his bad legs.

It ends like this.
Down on all fours,
shoulder to shoulder
our throats drumming a howl
‘til knees collapse,
and I limp back out
where, in rain,
my hip bones betray the weather.



Have a comment? >>