Saturday morning

6:30 a.m.

36 degrees  

they’ve already peed

in the cold, wet grass 

just outside the front door

now they’re back 

in the warm, soft bed 

spoiling into 

more rottenness

one is bundled 

under the sheets 

at my feet

the other sleeps guard

at his master’s shoulder

coiled up tight

like a knotted shoelace

lifts his snow-white 

unkempt Schnoodle beard

and bed-headed twisted brows

in a half-dazed stare

his all-expressive eyes


“I’m sleepy…

but I will attack.”

his eyes turn up 

to detect any foul motives 

like a pair of 

pitch-black egg yolks

sitting sideways 

atop fried white rims




I’m frozen in place


holding my breath 

watching him watch me

I move one finger

his eyes pounce 

to the motion

I move it again

his front legs jolt 

(issues from a previous life)

my mouth curves 

a half-degree smile

of amusement 

it’s all over now 

he leaps up

all in my face

licking the outside corner

of my bad right eye


as he does every morning 

his right paw

on his skinny part-poodle leg

that propels his always 


parade gait

now mauling my arm

demanding love

with an urgent itch-like 


he flops down

flips over

contorts awkwardly 

wallows himself 

into a spiked pretzel 

legs pointing the 

compass directions

and offers up

a submissive belly

that was 

as serious

as a Buckingham Palace guard

as suspecting

as a crime detective 

as untrusting 

as a suspicious spouse

mere seconds ago

I give a 

tight-tummy love rub 

but the foot warmer

detects attention

and jealously 

tunnels nose-first

up through the covers 


his way to the party 

crashing it to

claim his share 

yep, it’s all over now

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