rejectomorph (flying_blind) wrote,

Dog Days

This afternoon I didn't wake up until after two o'clock. Well, I actually woke up a few times before that but couldn't drag myself out of bed. I hadn't gotten to sleep until six o'clock, when light was already coming into the east. What worries me is that I might be returning to the crazy sleep schedule I had for a few years several decades ago, when my days were over 25 hours long and I had to keep re-setting my body clock. It was exhausting. The particular Southern California doctor who got me past that situation is long gone, and I doubt anybody here could work that particular magic. But it wouldn't surprise me to have that condition return, since so many other things I thought were in the past have also returned over the last few months.

Then I didn't get out all day. Since it was Sunday there wasn't even a reason to go to the mailbox. I just sat in the air conditioned apartment all day, with a few minutes spent in the back yard just for a bit of a change. I ate a slice of banana cream pie for lunch, with a small glass of sherry. When I couldn't put dinner off any longer I made some tuna sandwiches, which made me a bit sick, which I've remained ever since. I'd like to make an early night of it, but don't think I can sleep yet. I'm really looking forward to the latter part of this week, when it will cool off to something more like normal temperatures for this time of year, meaning highs in the mere high eighties. All I have to do is survive a few more very hot days. We'll see if that's easier said than done.

Sunday Verse

A Dog Has Died

by Pablo Neruda

My dog has died.
I buried him in the garden
next to a rusted old machine.

Some day I'll join him right there,
but now he's gone with his shaggy coat,
his bad manners and his cold nose,
and I, the materialist, who never believed
in any promised heaven in the sky
for any human being,
I believe in a heaven I'll never enter.
Yes, I believe in a heaven for all dogdom
where my dog waits for my arrival
waving his fan-like tail in friendship.

Ai, I'll not speak of sadness here on earth,
of having lost a companion
who was never servile.
His friendship for me, like that of a porcupine
withholding its authority,
was the friendship of a star, aloof,
with no more intimacy than was called for,
with no exaggerations:
he never climbed all over my clothes
filling me full of his hair or his mange,
he never rubbed up against my knee
like other dogs obsessed with sex.

No, my dog used to gaze at me,
paying me the attention I need,
the attention required
to make a vain person like me understand
that, being a dog, he was wasting time,
but, with those eyes so much purer than mine,
he'd keep on gazing at me
with a look that reserved for me alone
all his sweet and shaggy life,
always near me, never troubling me,
and asking nothing.

Ai, how many times have I envied his tail
as we walked together on the shores of the sea
in the lonely winter of Isla Negra
where the wintering birds filled the sky
and my hairy dog was jumping about
full of the voltage of the sea's movement:
my wandering dog, sniffing away
with his golden tail held high,
face to face with the ocean's spray.

Joyful, joyful, joyful,
as only dogs know how to be happy
with only the autonomy
of their shameless spirit.

There are no good-byes for my dog who has died,
and we don't now and never did lie to each other.

So now he's gone and I buried him,
and that's all there is to it.


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