Dogs 2007

INTERLOPER
(9/15/07)


most days
I feel
pretty good
about it all

I mortgaged
my foreseeable future
for a 3 bedroom house
in a comfortable
middle class
neighborhood
in order
to conform
fit in
be one
of the many

I walk
the neighborhood
knowing that
I have certainly
paid my way
and do
belong

I wave
to my neighbors
showing them
that I too
am one
with the community

their dogs
know me
wagging their tails
or at least
not barking
as I pass

I stop
and pet
most of them
(the dogs
not the neighbors)
and must admit that
I feel more kinship
with the canines
than with
their owners

last night
as I was communing
with a couple of Bassets
the master unexpectedly
emerged
from a side door
about 12 feet
away

he stopped
as I straightened
and looked at me
with a mixture
of disgust
and apprehension
as if he had found
something unknown
sticking to the bottom
of his trash can

I smiled
and asked him
a few questions
about the animals
but he just frowned
and shook his head
as if I spoke
some foreign
language

I began
backing
slowly away
toward the
street

I was
on his property
after all
and possibly perceived
as a threat

once past
the curb
I attempted
a few more friendly
enquiries
and although
he answered
the frown remained
so I turned
and left
in mid-sentence
to relieve both
our discomforts

I am
a fool
with no place
amongst people

perhaps
the time has come
to sell the house
move to the desert
and externalize
the isolation
realized by all
but myself

the time
has come
to euthanize
my charade