A Walk in the Spring with My Dog by Eleanor Lerman

A Walk in the Spring with My Dog

Well yes, it takes medicine now and will, plus
the kind of footgear that a wild child
just down from the barricades would expect
to anchor the costume of an elder
An old party, new to the game

which apparently begins now: as others
gather to march, we are stepping off
into the winds of tomorrow. The trees
part like a gate for The Dog Who Believes
That She Will Live Forever. Green grass,
yellow flowers, silver-running creeks:
all that, again and again, year after year
Why should it be otherwise?

Why? Because the winds have invaded
my house, so there is no turning back
The cups and saucers have been put away
The bed has fallen through the floor
Now, only the dreams of the dog know how
to clean the rooms. Only the dreams of
the dog filter down through the sunlight

and reveal the way. Now is the time of
lonely steps: human time, but with
an animal’s seeing eye. Thus, the
days arrive like letters in the wind

and open themselves fearlessly
while we wait to breathe

by Eleanor Lerman

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Editor’s Note: The imagery in this poem pulls the reader into aging with the narrator, and the dog that understands nothing of time. This dichotomy gives the final two lines extra meaning.