The dog of time pitchfork canter laced with mercury after-crave
any semblance to human is speculative, we’ve unburdened the
mass, the massive body signage, bondage, turf implant
unwiring programs and last resort paradigms
indicated by the spikes in goneness unknowable
flash how it feels to be a terminator
to be livestock replenished
caretaking around the pain
dogs of the animal in motion in deliberation
carrying on over cloud cover
as the twilight descends the animal is secreted
ocean compression and endless body spills
the edges are dissolved
the light is diminished
water spills over and the heat is a harbinger
and who is subject to this authority
rescue and an epistemological critique
and cross a proscribed threshold where the forest once was
now an emergency living space
Copyright © 2015 by Brenda Iijima. Used with permission of the author.
At last understanding
that everything my friend had been saying
for the thirty-three months since he knew
were words of the dog tag, words of, whatever else,
the milled and stamped-into metal of what stays behind.
Blackcap Mountain. Blue scorpion venom. Persimmon pudding.
He spoke them.
He could not say love enough times.
It clinked against itself, it clinked against its little chain.
Copyright © 2018 by Jane Hirshfield. Originally published in Poem-a-Day on March 29, 2018, by the Academy of American Poets.