The dog sleeps against my leg,
chest rising and falling, smelling of Milk-bones,
dirt and rain-washed fur.
She has nowhere to go, no thoughts
about what she ought to be doing now.
My ankle twitches, my thighs itch.
I count the ticks of the piano clock,
like a metronome set on andante, slow.
I should be practicing, arranging my music,
composing a brilliant new song to play.
The big dog whimpers in her sleep.
Her paws paddle in the air. She pants.
“It’s okay,” I whisper, stroking her back.
Her muscles tense beneath my hand,
then relax as she awakens with a sigh.
She jumps up, shakes from nose to tail,
stretches and leads me to the door.
Outside, the stars shine thick and bright.
As she trots across the grass to pee,
I gaze upward, still earning to simply be.
The pups in the picture are my babies Annie (tan) and Chico (black). They will turn seven next week.
All contents copyright Sue Fagalde Lick 2015
According to the calendar, we’re a long way from spring, but tell that to the plants and the trees, the shrubs and the daffodil bulbs bursting through the mud. Tell it to the robins and blue jays who have returned. Tell it to the tourists who came to town this weekend to enjoy blue skies and balmy temperatures. Tell it to the forest, hushed with anticipation, as Annie and I take our walk on a warm Sunday afternoon.
Tell it to the children who ran around the church hall during our potluck on Friday night, swinging around the poles, shrieking and laughing. Picture them 15 years from now when they’re going to college and getting married and still friends . . .
Tell it to the 27 little kids who went to confession for the first time on Saturday in preparation for First Communion at Sacred Heart Church. They approached the confessional with big sighs and exited with fist pumps, going up to the front of the church to light a candle and receive a certificate as I played instrumentals on the piano.
Tell it to me as I feel the urge to clean and plant, to mow the overgrown lawn and start new projects.
Groundhog’s Day hasn’t even happened yet. I know we will probably have more storms. I know that other parts of the country are buried in snow. But I also know that no matter what the calendar says, spring just called and said, “I’m on my way.”