No Cute Pets
A Dog’s Life, Circa 1804

You could end up on a river boat
keeping an eye on dandies
who cheat at cards, with a soldier
who guzzles whiskey, or a governor
with peacocks in his garden.
You might be bought by a shepherd,
keep his recalcitrant sheep
from straying, warn of wolf or bear.

As for me, I was purchased
by Meriwether Lewis, taken
to explore a continent full
of birds and rodents, fields
full of prickly pear and rattlesnakes.
It was a great adventure
till I watched his hungry men
eat dogs as they crossed
the Bitterroot Mountains.

“The human pedigree back to amoeba shown as a reinterpreted chain of being with living and fossil animals."
Ernst Haeckel, 1874.
Copyright 2013,  Wilda Morris

Wilda Morris, a widely published poet, is the Workshop Chair of Poets and Patrons of Chicago. Her blog, provides a monthly prompt and contest for other poets.

<< Previous      Contents      Next   >>