Dog in the Garden

Twin sets of ten dozen red bricks

sat opposite one another

and aged by day as the garden

that had separated them grew.

In it soon dwelt a man in robes

who wrote down his every thought,

ate well and often saw to guests.

A loving family was made

to accompany him in life,

and to lend credence to his death.

He had little care for the skies;

the sun that shone beat on his eyes.


Once, a dog had wandered inside;

in his teeth he carried a lamp.

He gazed at all and none, then spoke:

said that he sought an honest man.

Most chose to observe or decline.

The mutt took shelter in a jar.

Rather than give up on the day;

he rose and sought the figure who

captivated the largest crowd.

Along his way his mark was left

well in the wake of conquerors

who then offered their affection.


Thrice he heard a howl on the wind

and thought it distant mongrels -- when

the dog emerged, thinning and bare.

It sat as his rival and gave

challenge to the man's testaments -

his teachings and personal truths.

He scoffed at the garden in bloom,

the bounty of love he'd accrued;

the hedonist lain amongst flock.

He did not stray to fill his gut

or partake of the flowers near.

He only had eyes for this man ... 

Who had only a pleasant grin

to bear. No embittered sneering,

but a laugh and a word of praise

for the dog and his pious ways.

He met his gaze and spoke aloud:

with knowledge of his own good health,

he mused of friends, relationships -

sure paths as they are to freedom

and pleasure apart from anguish.

He lauded no claims of God's will,

nor spoke of his ineptitude;

he could only smile and sing.


Down to all fours the man then sank

and met the dog at fair level.

The dog postured and then bowed low.

No more words were exchanged of life

as another day turned to night.

Sleep had left them both as equals.


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