Wednesday, August 3, 2016

First Dog

This poem is about the English Springer Spaniel our family had when I was young.  She was the best companion and a terrific bird dog.

First Dog

We had a dog when I was young
who lived 
to hunt birds in the fall.
The rest of the year
she lived
to chase sparks from 
leaf-fueled backyard bonfires 
her brown and white body 
silhouetting smoky twilight.

She was our make-believe St. Bernard
who carried 
a canteen of hot chocolate
on snowy sledding days.

She carried 
first aid supplies as
we fought 
the Germans in Belleau Wood.

When we had been in trouble at school
she would greet
us  at the back door as if 
we were conquering heroes and 
after we been scolded and 
sent to our room
she would snuggle with 
us on the bed 
a warm hairy bandage 
for our wounds.

On bright mornings 
with no school

she ran with us
chasing our bicycles 
through the maze of our youth.

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