What do I say to Kirk?
I don’t know what to say to Kirk.
Kirk’s the problem. You can explain
at length to the sad and the shocked,
but shaggy portly golden dogs have no
use for the science of mutation and bad luck.
If it doesn’t bounce, flap or smell like
food then Kirk just doesn’t get it.
He’s got that blankie still. Rotted with the
drool of comfort years and glazed with some
real sweaty summers. Snuggles it close as ever.
An anchor in the squally seas of change.
Creaks those cranky joints together with
a huge Kirky-boy sigh and thumps himself
into the cloth with squeezed-together eyes.
I swear he used to smile.
Now he just rumbles on that blankie, day and night
with those wobbly-paw half-yelps of him
chasing down sleep sheep or some night rabbits.
Or he just guards at that bottom window and sighs
through his nose at the disappointments. Waiting.
Early days he’d point the flop from his ears,
whiskers shivering, and bob his head like Ali if he heard
a car coming up the road. It’s knocked the shine out of
his eyes, all that fruitless checking and weaving.
Now all Kirk’s got left is the stare-and-stare, glassy eyed,
into the distance. Not a flicker except a blink to wet those
big brown pleading pools. But he hasn’t given up even though I’ve
explained it all to him until we’ve both had enough and
wack down by your couch. I’ve written to everyone else
and told them, cancelled things, notified, crossed the T’s,
but, I just don’t know what to say to Kirk.
Kirk’s the problem.