Dog Dreaming

Source: Flickr user pure9. PhotoPin, Creative Commons license.
Source: Flickr user pure9. PhotoPin, Creative Commons license.

Dog Dreaming

W.S. Merwin

The paws twitch in place of chasing
Where the whimper of this seeming-gentle creature
Rings out terrible, chasing tigers. The fields
Are licking like torches, full of running,
Laced odors, bones stalking, tushed leaps.
So little that is tamed, yet so much
That you would find deeply familiar there.
You are there often, your very eyes,
The unfathomable knowledge behind your face,
The mystery of your will, appraising
Such carnage and triumph; standing there
Strange even to yourself, and loved, and only
A sleeping beast knows who you are.

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By Dark

Camil Tucan, via Photopin. Creative Commons license.
Camil Tucan, via Photopin. Creative Commons license.

By Dark

W.S. Merwin

When it is time I follow the black dog
into the darkness that is the mind of day

I can see nothing there but the black dog
the dog I know going ahead of me

not looking back oh it is the black dog
I trust now in my turn after the years

when I had all the trust of the black dog
through an age of brightness and through shadow

on into the blindness of the black dog
where the rooms of the dark were already known

and had no fear in them for the black dog
leading me carefully up the blind stairs

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

Merwin! Who can be compared with thee?