"A Song for Dog People"
Oh great winter, how I thank your blustery cold January.
You are both my enemy and friend.
For your chill has invited laziness, and the grace of your snow has hidden it from the world.
Now you have had your January thaw, a tease of the spring to come,
and with it the revelation of months of sloth on the part of the humans of this house.
For months your blanket has hidden the gluttony of three beasts within,
their devouring of food and the process of life has resurfaced turning our yard from white to shades of earth.
So now I confront you, with hoe and shovel in hand.
My chest burns from the chill of the air;
but I am thankful for this same chill has reduced the olfactory power of the duty before me.
With hoe, an instrument use to turn the soil and produce food for centuries;
now a toll for the end of life of said food.
I chisel, I kick, and free the scars from the frozen turf.
Now with rake I pile, and shovel I load into the bag.
The job is complete, your frozen surface once again white.
With a quick prayer to the gods of plastic.
"May your polymers hold true,
for I know your load is great.
If you be too chilled, and weak
a great calamity will ensue.
May our bulk buying;
and savings seek not betray me now."
I heave and lift, cautious to not tear bag on fence.
One final shove and you are away;
may the temperature hold their frosty state;
so the contents will not leak until the men of refuse cleanse us of our sins.
I return to the cold lawn,
and look upon its landscape.
White and inviting for play it is once again;
but gaiety is not recommended.
For playing in this yard may bring on diphtheria.