Archives for June 2014

30 June 2014

Polo and Clover

wish to say

they neither endorse nor

approve these poems





they are true


Clover and Polo invite you to

come over sometime so

they can tell their own poems

on me.

29 June 2014

Blue of morning and Tokie’s out. He’s

hardly ever out, like Darlin’, when she got old.

Different bird today—one serious about her song.

Clover and Polo are serious about sleep.

They sleep on the dog bed, in the grass, on the porch, on the welcome mat, on the guest bed, on my bed, on the Goodwill chair, in the middle of the kitchen while I’m cooking dinner.

They are not as old as Tokie or Darlin’ and won’t be

for another 10 years. They have a good decade

to sleep, in the blue

of night and the blue of morning

the blue of full noon sun.

Michelle DeRusha’s “Spiritual Misfit”

Today I’m over at Michelle DeRusha‘s place, heartily endorsing her new memoir, “Spiritual Misfit.” Because there’s room for all of us birds to perch.


23 June 2014

Clover Learns to Drive

First day of summer, almost 16, my son

and I leave the house at sundown

to practice night-driving.


“Can we take Clover?”

She loves short car rides. “Sure.”


From the backseat, Clover takes her usual spot standing

front paws on the center console

master and commander of this vessel


our lives are in her hands. She barks her approval at my son

adjusting mirrors, moving the seat to fit a human

a full foot taller than the car’s owner. Me.


“Ready, Clover?” he asks, and we’re goin’

to Austin.


Clover navigates the full seventy-

five miles, until we pull into the Westlake Randall’s

at 10:30 p.m. and dock our vessel in a parking space.


She has delivered us safely to our harbor. She retreats

to her cabin (the backseat) while we disembark and buy water.

She does not wake when we set sail for home, does not stir once.


“C’mon, Clover,” he says at midnight as he opens the craft’s door,

gathers his weary co-captain, still dreaming of hill country roads,

waves of asphalt.

20 June 2014

When we were away the dog bed

relocated from my daughter’s room (where

it only belonged to Polo) to the living room, where

she and Clover share. Polo curled tight

like a snail. Clover puffing out her long hair to seem as big

as possible.


I walk past them in their bed.

Clover’s tail wags, slapping Polo in the face.

18 June 2014

Unhooking Clover

from her leash I realize the fresh air fluffs

off the odor of dead fish


Where would she find a fish?


There are no lakes, no streams, no ocean nearby

only a dried-up river


Perhaps a fish swam up through the drain, seized

its chance as drought deepened

swam up a sewer pipe, sort of like salmon


Maybe that is why last night Clover peered

into the bathtub

ears expectant.

17 June 2014

Polo steps on a sticker burr

now she lying in the middle of the road, trying

to eat it out of her foot.


She is not as good at this as Clover.


I reach my hand to help. Polo pulls



I reach again. Again she pulls away

makes a complete circle to avoid relief.


Finally, I grab her paw she pulls away

I hold on. The thorny ball

is lodged deep in the crevice of her pads.


whisk! Gone.


She runs from me     black leash trailing

in my left hand I pick up Clover’s pink leash     walk forward

Polo quickens her pace and I step

on her leash. Pick it up in my right hand.


“C’mon, Puppy,” I say. “Let’s go.”

16 June 2014

I step inside to brew more tea

leaving Clover lying flat

beside my picnic table/desk


When I return with a full pot

she is still lying flat

beside my picnic table/desk


Her feather boa tail wags in a slow circle

14 June 2014

The dogs did not stir when I did

down dog

they did not attack my cobra

when I went into goddess, they yawned

they ignored each mountain pose

never tried to cross my bridge never

swam with my dolphin.


They know sometimes what you need most is a good nap.

12 June 2014

The dog house—the one no dogs use— has moved from there

to here.


I can see into the hole in the roof

hole the size of May hail

that crashed through this igloo-shaped dome. Some

years, the only ice we get comes in May

hurtling from heaven, the size of a softball.


I think the dogs are smarter the smart ones. They stopped

treading long ago where danger left damage.


It’s closer to the trash can now. Perhaps Polo pushed

the dog house while  Clover barked encouragement

both hoping I would finally take the hint.


We keep hoping the dogs will make this igloo-

shaped plastic their home, in this home where there is

no snow.