Friday, February 27, 2015

poem of the day 02.27.15

dog shit

there is dog shit
scattered all over this crooked landscape
a guy looks at me
points down and says, poop shrapnel
before i almost step in a patch
that already has some poor sap’s boot print in it
i say, thanks pal,
and the two of us continue on
in a serpentine around the rest
dog shit is the plague of this neighborhood
there are signs everywhere
telling people to curb their dog
microsoft words docs in bold letters
telling the offending dog owners
threating sonnets claiming to have the police involved
but, still, every morning
new and fresh steaming piles of dog shit
for everyone on the block to walk around
my wife and i once had a dog
back when we were dating
it was coon hound mix
that no amount of training could tame
the dog destroyed pillows and vhs tapes
boxes of tampons and record sleeves
i used to walk the beast in the morning and after work
three long circles around the block
to try and get him to shit
wondering why in the hell i had a dog
as the beast bit at me and its leash
attacked other dogs and finally let out the worst of dung piles
i used to carry the turds in a plastic container
that looked like a shovel
i’d toss the dog shit in bushes or in flower beds
always feeling like i was giving back to the earth
on weekends we’d chain the dog in the backyard
so that we didn’t have to walk him
or clean up shit so early in the morning
we let him run in circles and bark the morning away
shit all over the backyard
while we slept off another friday night at the bar
when i woke up i’d go outside to clean the dog shit
while the coon hound pulled on its chain
and tried to get at me
often there were notes from concerned neighbors
instructing my girlfriend and i
on the proper way to take care of a dog
once one of the notes was in crayon and in a child’s hand
mornings like that i usually tossed the dog shit into the next yard
just to send a message back
then i went back to bed and let the dog sleep between us
we had to dog maybe three months
before we had to give him back to the rescue league
my girlfriend took him back while i sat in the apartment
crying over an animal that i didn’t even like all that much
drinking beer after beer
i felt like such a damned failure
until i finally went out into the back yard
to collect his chain and the few toys we had for him
walking around the yard like a lost man
while the neighbors watched me from their windows
searching for any last piles of dog shit
that i might’ve missed.


No comments: