Off all things, this morning, the dog
at the door, waiting to go out. I’m slow —
half-awake, naked, one foot maybe in front
of another — and she’s impatient, hind-end
wiggling faster than any minute hand.
She’s old, this dog, and not mine
and every night I worry I’ll wake up
and one of us will be dead. But every morning
she’s more alive than me. Like now.
I talk to her a lot, since she’s the only one
to talk to. The chickens don’t listen,
the red-bellied newts have poisoned tongues
and the trees don’t speak my language.
I talk to the creek sometimes, too, but it
only hears the rain. So, “Good morning,
pup,” as I pull on my wellies. And
“Wanna’ go out, pup?” as I find my brain
and settle it into the cave of my head.
She usually doesn’t answer, but for
that tick-tock hind-end and the wag of her tongue.
Of all things, this morning, the dog
at the door, waiting to go out. She lowers
her head in response, and from her mouth,
a single brown egg. It comes to rest on the floor
between us. Still-perfect shell
marred only by tongue and love.
How long has she carried this
to lay it at my feet, whole and


About This Poem: The dog actually did just that this morning. The truth doesn’t often make for good poetry, I don’t think, at least not those odd kinds of truths, but it seemed liked a good challenge to take a real-life event and see what I could come up with in poem-form. Also, I love the idea of a title coming back around as last line and I wanted to play with that too.

About Poem-A-Day: For the month of April (National Poetry Month), I’ve signed on to write a poem-a-day (eeks!). To make it slightly easier on myself, my rules are that I have to write each poem in fifteen minutes or less, and that I have to post it here on the blog as soon as I’m done. No edits. Just rough. Raw. Right out of the gate. (Of course, if you’re playing along, I hope you’ll post a link to your poem in the comments here — mainly because I’m selfish and I want to read them!)

See all my Poem-A-Day poems here.

You can also read some amazing poems-a-day over at Sage Cohen’s blog.