Dogs 2010

LIFELINE
(7/21/10)


the snaky
apparition
suddenly
appeared
wrapped around
the upper branches
of an azalea
bush

the vine
had not
been there
only a few
days before
but all the rain
in this uncharacteristically
wet summer
had sprung up
a sundry
of plant life

right
after work
was not the time
to tackle
some tricky
unwinding process
so I traced the growth
to the ground
then yanked
the green
umbilical
to nowhere
from its
source

herbicide
complete
I proceeded
to the house
but wondered
at the dynamics
of death
for a life
so dissimilar
to my
own

did
the upper reaches
realize instantaneously
once the root
was ripped
that the end
was near?

I remembered
some vague
nonsense
such as
xylem up
phloem down
but also pictured
traces of dyed water
slowly creeping along
a translucent
stem
of long
ago

maybe
the highest
extremity
had no notion
of its coming
demise

I was
left
to consider
such things
as I removed
my office clothes
and searched for attire
better fitting
a human

this morning
on the way
back to work
I stopped to look
at the azalea
and saw
that the vine
looked much
the same
as yesterday

with the
temperature
expected to reach
one hundred
this afternoon
the poor sucker
was in
for one
long
day

I walked
guiltily
away