Alone on Sunday afternoon, I watch the dog’s paws twitching as he sleeps.
His dream turns like a newsreel: simple chase
between snapped branches, lurching toward a sky,
the path irrelevant, his prey a prayer, the blue flame of his being
flared to high. But call it dim recurrent animal, this dream
that all dogs dream. Like that relentless dream of ropes and stays
in which I turn my body like a filmstrip
to the light. Yes, pin me
to the window, watch me jerk
from frame to animated frame: each small, belabored increment. Each day
a pink sun moving south against the wall
glides through the strictures of winter. The camera
lucida or obscure. Here are my lumpy socks, my unmade bed. No tragedy
in these particulars. But friends, when I sit at your table
there’s a voice in me that says Give
up. Give up. It pumps along like a half-dead frog.
Ladies and gentlemen, it says, this train has left the station. Wave
to your friends on the platform. You may begin
to panic at any time.
Anne Shaw will appear in Penn Book Center's Random Name Poetry Series
on Saturday 7 December at 2 pm. Also reading will be Dianne Timblin.
Penn Book Center presents a different
poem in this location each weekday.
If there is an amazing poem that
you'd like to share, let us know.
Upcoming events in Penn Book Center's
Random Name Poetry Series
(Readings are on Saturdays at 2pm)
December 7: Anne Shaw and Diane Timblin
February 1: Sarah Arvio and Ernest Hilbert
February 15: Julia Bloch and Simone White
March 29: Thomas Devaney and Gregory Djanikian