The Coming of the Dog

So. In a low season, tag-end of winter
and time on our hands (an illusion), did we
feel two teens still at home, two rodents, a cat
not enough? Not that our love couldn’t stretch so
far. Did we need to give without guilt or fear
of spoilage? (a softening too soon into
grandparent-mind, accepting these unfinished
offspring as imperfect, and by our own fault.)

We begin again. Well. She knows a few things
about respecting furniture, sleeping through
the shortening nights. But see, how she needs me
and how I fail again in wrestling, running,
being best friend. Don’t say, unconditional
love. I am more than proof against those brown eyes,
their eloquent pleas.


The girl looks a lot like you
red hair (but dyed), the nose-ring
of rebellion and my pang
for her parents pulls up short
in self-excuse—I want to say
they are not like us
but can we know anything
of how? of their heart-tides
the thousand-faceted diamond
of one soul in one frail body
or its shattering fault

It’s the same old lava pit, one slip
from the beam and we’re lost
in boiling regret. Can we not
spend your lifetime in fretting
over who and what and why?
your path finds its shape

We’ll call it decluttering

You are done with the dolls
you announce, no more
than what I already knew.
I tried to lay my regret
on how they have been
lying lumped there
all this time, unused.
(We all deserve the joy
of use.) But now I see
that your childhood
has slipped out a side door
when we weren’t looking
or maybe got lost in the move
with that fabled one box
holding all the bits and pieces
we still can’t find


NaPoWriMo, Day 23.