Penultimate (Puppy) Poem

Hound Review
In the examination room
the hounds smile toothily
caried canines like red chillies
on a black-leafed shrub
salmon tongues that loll:
love us, love us

Back home, the words repeat:
familial amyloidosis— they are siblings,
four to twenty months, I'd say;
they are eleven; nine is the usual
for this condition,
so: a good age for a dog.

Now they sit in the mild sun on the deck,
silhouettes against a cloud of spring gnats;
dreaming dog dreams-
And I consider benazepril and baby aspirin,
bladder-smote beds and kibble for compromised kidneys.

Ah, but I remember too:
those mill-puppies with the large stomachs
and honey-amber eyes.
If I have to review them now,
I'd give them an eleven out of eleven.

Still. I hope for twelve.

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