On Dogs

by jdavidcharles

The dog scratches and

scratches a trench in

the mold—or so a poem

about a dog scratching a

trench in the mold would

likely begin, taking the

poor creature, chained

first to a pole, and if not

a pole, a dog “house”(I put

“house” in quotes because,

really now, a house is

something of one’s own,

and, even if little more than

just a room, your room, it is

in fact your room, and you

and I both know that neither

of these are a likely case

for our hypothetical dog,

whose room is his or hers

about as much as this poem

is his or hers or yours even),

and if not chained to a dog

“house” then surely fenced-in

or on a leash, then given the

double injustice of being

chained to a language,

fenced-in by metaphors of

our choosing to be cleverly

used or, perhaps, not so cleverly

used, to say something about

the nature of language or the

current state of domestication

of animals in the United States

or something, which, more than

likely, is not even a concern of

our dog (see how natural it

sounds!—our dog), whose sole

concern at this moment, or so

one could imagine it to be, is

simply to be here, paws to the

mold, and scratching, scratching.