by Katie Kemple
endless patience will never be enough
the only hope is to be the daylight – W.S. Merwin
The dog doesn’t want to go out anymore,
not first thing when we wake.
She stays in her bed, turns her head
away from us to fit in another half hour
of rest, as we bustle downstairs
with coffee, waffles, and laptops.
Eventually, her body knows to test
its limbs again, to crack bones, and break gas,
to move from her bed to the stairwell,
to take the steep journey one step
at a time, to go from that final stair
to her cushion, while I get the leash.
The sun embraces us, her warm hug immediate.
The trill and stutter of birds celebrating survival.
We walk slowly to the dog’s favorite spots.
She sniffs morning notes and scribbles her own.
Whatever cruelty is plastered across my phone
can wait. This news fills my body first.
About the photographer: Emily Sorensen is an environmental educator and a doctoral candidate researching ecological art and performance at the Yale School of Drama, where she earned an MFA in Dramaturgy and Dramatic Criticism. She likes to go outside and take pictures of trees. @emily.sorensen