Monday, March 03, 2014

Monday Poetry Stretch - Dogs!

I've been reading Mary Oliver and any other dog poetry on can get my hands on. This weekend I read this gem at American Life in Poetry.

Dog in Bed 
by Joyce Sidman

Nose tucked under tail,
you are a warm, furred planet
centered in my bed.
All night I orbit, tangle-limbed,
in the slim space
allotted to me.

If I accidentally
bump you from sleep,
you shift, groan,
drape your chin on my hip.

Read the poem in its entirety.

It hasn't been a week yet, but I'm particularly inspired by the newest addition to our family. Say hello to Hemingway.

He's very sweet and in need of lots of love and affection. He'll get all of that and then some! Right now we're just trying to put some weight on his skinny frame. His hips and ribs are visible, but we'll have him right as rain in no time.

Since I'm home today for another snow day (this makes 9 so far this year!), I'm reading and writing do poetry. Won't you join me this week? Please share a link to your poem or the poem itself in the comments.


  1. Sorry--meant to say, have you read the entire book? It's wonderful... :>)

    1. Yes, THE WORLD ACCORDING TO DOG is terrific. Sadly, it's at my office and I am snowed in at home. I believe there are certain books I need two copies of, one for work and one for home!

  2. Have you read the three books by Deborah Heiligman? Snow Dog, Go Dog is the most recent. They're wonderful.

    1. No, I haven't. I will definitely look for them.

  3. This was written about my friend Terri Windling's dog.

    The Muse of Bumblehill

    There’s nothing like a snouted Muse
    alert on the writing room sofa,
    snuffling her inspiration
    into your sweaty palm,
    licking poems on your cheek,
    and comfort into your bones.

    The stories she inspires
    run along your backbone
    like a dog on the hunt,
    along a mountain’s spine.
    She stands at point
    for every good line,
    and howls at the inspired moon.

    Feed her daily, fill her bowl,
    and she’ll come at your call.
    Ignore her many hungers,
    and she’ll leave your couch
    to run free in the wold,
    to find some other master,
    some other hunter,
    some other writer
    to give her love.

    ©2014 Jane Yolen all rights reserved

  4. And another one about Terri's dog, Tilly:

    The Beast as Guide

    Sure-footed on the path
    where I go with less ease,
    the dog runs ahead.
    She does not see as I see.
    She hears trees converse,
    smells buds opening.
    The pads on her paws
    send messages to her
    from the rumbling earth.
    She leaves a trail
    I cannot track.

    How blind we go after them,
    these guides who are intimate
    with the world.
    All we have is the flag
    of tail to follow,
    breath curling in the air,
    the short, sharp shock
    of a bark calling
    when we, all too human, f
    alter along the path.

    ©2013 Jane Yolen all rights reserved

  5. Our office is pretty casual and my coworker's dog comes to work about twice a week. This is him:


    Sometimes he comes to work,
    indignant hall monitor,
    small officious mutt.
    Tells us with loud barking
    to stay on the correct floors,
    even in the right offices.

    When we hold
    department meetings
    he stands vigil at the door,
    hoping it open, saying
    what no one else will say,
    that meetings are pointless.

    Outside, the world waits,
    with its sticks and twigs,
    its bugs and birds.
    Inside, Walter waits,
    indignant hall monitor
    and king of the fields.

    —Kate Coombs, 2014
    all rights reserved

  6. RON JON

    My biscuit brown, chalky colored bundle of joy,
    Ears ramrod straight like a marine. Skin smooth as
    Marble, aside from that rippled forehead that I kiss
    Every morning. Your voice box may be missing a
    Bark, yet you have a way of communicating all
    Your own. Nuzzling my hand to signal when
    Meal time has arrived, pawing at my pant leg to
    Alert me of a bathroom break, gazing into my orbs
    When it’s time to commence daily calisthenics. My
    Heart melts watching you roam around our home:
    Checking out table legs, looking for scraps of leftover
    Supper, sniffing around like a canine Sherlock Holmes
    With your chew toy, a much abused Mr. Watson, dangling
    Around as company. One drizzly night when my Auntie
    Pearl passed on; you followed me into bed, swirled at
    My hip, as my cries and your yodels cascaded
    Into the night.

    (c) Charles Waters 2014 all rights reserved.

  7. Dogsense

    I’ve never pinsched a Doberman
    Or whipped a whippet’s tail.
    I’ve never trailed a Saint Bernard
    To find the Holy Grail.
    I’ve never knocked a boxer out
    Or bored a borzoi’s brain,
    But I’ve endured soliloquies
    From Hamlet, my Great Dane:
    “To die, to sleep; to sleep: perchance
    To dream; ay, there’s the rub.”
    And oh, the thousand natural shocks
    When he doesn’t get his grub.

    © 2014 Steven Withrow, all rights reserved