Always in Megan’s Orbit

Always in  Megan’s Orbit

Four years, now.
Two more, and the time
I’ve missed you
will begin to eclipse
the time I shared with you.

You loved walks at any time,
autumn, summer, spring,
but you were already entering
your winter when I met you,
and soon a short walk
was followed by a long nap.

Leaping high for snow
pushed off the deck
became more of a bound,
and jumping at raked leaves
might bring a fall on the hip
that had plagued you
most of your life.

Border collie to the end,
you brought me into your fold,
and I’m better for the love
found there. Nothing will eclipse that.

This is my response to Day 17 at,
where we are asked to write a dog-inspired poem.

…more Megan, on WordPress

April 4, 2015
September 11, 2015
April 24, 2016
December 8, 2016
January 24, 2017
April 21, 2017
October 10, 2017
June 16, 2018
June 22, 2018

Last Sunset

Last Sunset

Solace_aI’ve heard stories
from a time before
you had nine years
behind you.

Hanging with your pack
when teen LAN
parties were the norm.

Motorcycles that sped
by, barely outrunning you
as you tried to herd them.

Last Sunset_2

That photo of you caught
red-pawed on the dining room
table, butter dish licked clean.

My own stories came
when you were slowly
slowing down. Less adventure,
but I know you enjoyed
my company, as if you knew
I traveled nine hundred miles
to meet you.

Last Sunset_aNeighborhood walks,
when no alpha went

The way your eyes lit up,
your tail wagged,
when your Jujube visited.

Popcorn nights
on sci-fi Friday.

Avoiding hills
and the suffering
they delivered to your hips.

Your determination
to be a border collie.

Saying goodbye.

…more Megan, on WordPress

April 4, 2015
September 11, 2015
April 24, 2016
December 8, 2016
January 24, 2017
April 21, 2017
October 10, 2017
June 16, 2018

Seeming Disembodied ~ haibun

seeming disembodied_2

Seeming Disembodied

After marking her favorite spot next to the honeysuckle, Megan starts the short climb up the hill that is our backyard in the last moments of twilight as fireflies dance around her. Thinking she will cross those thirty feet fine without the aid of my flashlight, I turn from the deck rail and wait for her by the door. But her eyesight is poor, and she is easily confused.  Good days and bad.

When she doesn’t appear on the deck, I run inside for my sandals and go out to the lawn and downhill with the flashlight, but she’s nowhere to be found. I check her favorite spot and then go uphill past the deck to another area that is part of her daytime patrol as a border collie, with no luck. Making a quick lap around the house, something that would take Megan a good ten minutes due to her reduced mobility, proves to be just as fruitless, so I go back inside for help.

My wife goes downhill, past the cleared lawn, to an area thick with brush, where Megan never goes, while I go out front to check the street. I hear her call out my name and rush to the back and head downhill, where she hears Megan’s tags rattling on her collar. I turn the light into the brush, and it cuts a line through the darkness that leads right to Megan, too weak to stand, lying behind a pile of broken branches thirty yards past her usual limits. The climb back up the hill is effortless for her, as I carry her curled up against my chest knowing her trips, both downhill and up, are numbered.

frail bodies glowing
lights seeming disembodied
from garden to grass in the night
life seems far too short at times

Seeming Disembodied_1



SolaceSight now limited
to moving shapes, what is sound
to an aging border collie?

A low rumble, the barely
open window anticipating
the coming rain. She paces

in the dark, a rare occurrence,
hearing mostly gone.
From the side of the bed,

she nudges my hand. Reaching
down to rub her ears, I know
this won’t do, rise to sit

beside her, stroke her side.
These days will be gone.
We all need comfort.

Solace_aMegan, these past 2+ years:

April 4, 2015
September 11, 2015
April 24, 2016
December 8, 2016
January 24, 2017
April 21, 2017




TwilightNo longer padding softly,
grace not a part of her
early twilight,
she paces,
as if listening.
But to what?

to hand prompts
when she sees them,
hearing is something
she barely remembers.

The pacing is short-lived.
She tires easily,
sleeps most of the time.
Watching her dream,
there are some things
she does remember.

Always thirsty.
Medication does that, but
also thirsty for attention.

If her tail is any indication,
she still loves life.
And those ears.
When they perk, she could
melt any heart.

She wants to be a border collie.
And, she will be.
For a little while longer.


Off-prompt for NaPoWriMo 2017 on Day 21 of National Poetry Writing Month/Global Poetry Writing Month.

NaPoWriMo 2017GloPoWriMo 2017

To Megan

To Megan

My dearest Megan, wherefore hast that lovely season gone?
That time of autumnal colors for which we long?
Thou wouldst prance and grasp at the many leaves.
Thy joy knew no bounds, I do believe.
Thine whole body would fairly quiver,
Whilst thoughts of coming cold did make me shiver.

Now the birds of spring with their harmonious song
Remind us we need not dwell on all the wrong
Brought by that frigid season of recent past;
Our trees shall flourish with color, at last.
If not for pollen, this beauty could be seen
Without the aid of antihistamines.

This too shall pass, and when it has,
The sultry summer likely shall cast
A blanket o’er us like a mighty pall;
And as it does, thy tongue shall loll.
But then comes autumn, when we’ll fell most super
At thoughts of walks with our pooper scooper.

To Megan_a

Day Twenty-Four of 2016 NaPoWriMo.
The prompt from is to write using overly poetic words with everyday words.  Thank you to Percy Shelly, whose words inspired me.


Changing of the Guard

Changing of the Guard

She paces at night
From room to room
Lies down
Keeps the house in order
Even at twelve years
With bad hips
She has a job to do
She’s a border collie

She paces tonight
This morning, 2am
But this is different
She pants
Places her head on the bed
Her nose in my face
It has come
As always,
She feels it to her core
Through her bones

Thunder rolls
And rolls
I reach over
Rub her side
Her ears
My turn to make her feel secure
And still the thunder rolls

So now, here I sit
On the floor
Back against the couch
Rubbing her heaving side
In the dark
My face illuminated
Her story told
By my laptop
And the rolling thunder