Oyster Boy Review 21  
  Poetry Annual 2014
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» Levee 67


Dog's Heart

David Musgrove

all men are dogs
—some woman

I came to you with a dog's heart.
I'd loped along the lost ways,
pawed through garbage for good shadows to eat,
snarled at dangers, then turned and ran.
When I found you I was tired, laid my head in your lap.

These things seem to last a year or so,
then suddenly the bed is too small for two,
your friends begin to seem obnoxious
and I learn you never liked mine.
When we stop going to the grocery store,
together, I know it's almost time
and when you look at me
your eyes grow tired and even I
become hungry for shadows again,
a dark place to lie down.

Some night when you're sitting somewhere,
talking and smiling with the next one,
or, alone with a glass of wine after a long day,
you might hear the gentle, rusted rattle
of a freight train passing through whatever town,
on its way to somewhere, and maybe you'll hear,
the horn blast short and sharp, and then long
as it nears the crossing, and then another sound,
rising alongside the horn, some old hound, howling,
singing his song as he wanders along through
whatever town, on his way to somewhere.

. . .