Abused, abandoned and left to die of thirst or predation more than a dozen years ago on a largely uninhabited county road terminating at our rural property’s entrance, Jackboy brought much laughter and comfort to our household. Tireless shadow, friend, writing partner, loyal companion and protector, he was, and will remain forever, a good boy – in his estimation, the highest possible praise. It has been two days. We miss him.
recognition eases in: the patterns
of repetition and praise
and joy in task. The orange ball. A scorpion’s
tail. How we delight in sharing each
victory. And with the breeze
runs other unspoken tales – a neighbor’s
cruelty, bones, the pregnant raccoon
lumbering through the cedars. But nothing
deters the jump and the following drop.
Few essays on writing poetry grab me by the collar, slam me against the wall, and say “Listen, dammit!” But this one did.
Camille Dungy’s words sear through the fog. She tells it slant. She tells it true. She explains how some masters have done it. If you’ve not read her poetry, seek it out. You’re in for a treat. If you have the good fortune to attend a lecture or reading by her, do so. She’s energetic, wise and kind. She knows.