Old Dog

Each morning in the blackness
I hear Bella patrol the fenceline,
her nose to all that passed
through while we slept.
Each morning I hear her dig
a little more the depression
deeper below the cedar planks
that keep the mouths away:
mouths and all those irksome eyes.

I hear dirt splatter the leaves.
How soon how deep I say —
she pauses perhaps
possum deep.

Each morning at the thorny
smudge of the gooseberry bushes
she flushes a hare. Each morning.
The hare roused and startled merely
never flees but simply steps aside.
It is only when coyotes wail
that she stiffens — huntress she,
unburdened of need. Sometimes

She’ll welp below the clothesline,
turning and turning over some feline
brawl that now has arguably
thrashed her garden.

Image: 🇨🇭 Claudio Schwarz | @purzlbaum on Unsplash

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