What the Dog Perhaps Hears

We know dogs don’t hear that well, but it’s still fun to imagine. A thoughtful and engaging poem by Liesl Mueller, featured in her Pulitzer Prize-winning collection Alive Together: New and Selected Poems.

“Sea of Gold,” by Lokidayo.

WHAT THE DOG PERHAPS HEARS
Liesl Mueller

If an inaudible whistle
blown between our lips
can send him home to us,
then silence is perhaps
the sound of spiders breathing
and roots mining the earth;
it may be asparagus heaving,
headfirst, into the light
and the long brown sound
of cracked cups, when it happens.

We would like to ask the dog
if there is a continuous whir
because the child in the house
keeps growing, if the snake
really stretches full length
without a click and the sun
breaks through clouds without
a decibel of effort,
whether in autumn, when the trees
dry up their wells, there isn’t a shudder
too high for us to hear.

What is it like up there
above the shut-off level
of our simple ears?

For us there was no birth cry,
the newborn bird is suddenly here,
the egg broken, the nest alive,
and we heard nothing when the world changed.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Happy holidays to everyone! We will be traveling from now until the first week of the new year, so there will be a dog blog hiatus, but we’ll come back with lots of pictures and stories, I’m sure. Hope everyone has a peaceful, relaxing, and dog-loving holiday season!

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4 thoughts on “What the Dog Perhaps Hears

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