Monday, July 22, 2019

Morning Walk, Rock Hall

Morning Walk, Rock Hall

The purple martins mock us
as we stroll past their crowded house.
For once, the dogs ignore them,
intent on sharper smells closer to the ground --
frogs and bunnies, decapitated fish
abandoned by picky osprey. It's easy
to forget how alive the world is. This morning 
I read that Iceland has written a love letter 
to a lost glacier. Closer to home, 
spring torrents have made mud where fields
once ripened with corn. For just an hour,
I would be as tunnel-nosed as my pups, 
seeking out the scent-trails in front of me, 
the hope of a filled bowl yet to be. Ambition 
has ruined us. The dogs are content 
to chase a handful of waddling ducks. A thousand 
squawking fowl couldn't satisfy their desire to hunt, 
could only confuse and terrify these two rescued, 
damaged creatures. Desire of a certain kind
can break you. Make you hoard misery
until the chambers of your heart 
silt in. Until your blood trickles
where it once flowed unconstrained. I want
the joy of a chase where the bird scolds me
for even trying, where I watch it soar, where I
laugh at how ponderous legs have disappointed me 
again. The dogs herd me back to the house, mouths 
soft,ears flapping, limbs gliding over the ground
with an ease I may never match. They forgive
my clumsy tugs on their leads, patient
and kind with all my human failings.  

--LJ Cohen, July 22, 2019

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