It was as if having survived the Bush administration,
she could let go,
the teenaged dog, white-faced,
geriatric, blind, she
simply trotted into traffic on November fourth,
but heartbreakingest of all is the question
a child asks, "Do dogs go to heaven?"
because we must say no.
There once were three women
who were beside themselves with grief.
A mob had nabbed a friend of theirs,
tortured Him, and killed Him.
When, in a few days,
they went to visit the grave,
His body was gone. Said the first woman,
"Our friend has somehow survived and escaped!"
The second woman said, "No, He has risen above
and resides with God."
The third woman was silent. She looked
around the landscape where
crucifixes stood like a putrid forest,
listened to the howling,
saw the paw prints,
and the third woman
knew, Our friend has been eaten by dogs.
Yes, as profane as it is:
Christ is dogshit.
But when you cross Christ, you fall:
Just look at the Romans, the poor Jews,
and didn't the Indians seal their fate, early on, when
torched a church? And when you hear of famine in Africa,
floods in Bangladesh, or an earthquake in Japan,
it crosses your mind that it is because they are heathens.
And look at deferent dogs,
our speechless servants
you can beat them even,
and they grovel back to you,
eyes marinated in a panicky love:
the holy spirit dances before them,
an ass's carrot,
just out of reach.