23 December 2015

For a Lost Boy

You were a puppy, dearest:
with eager smiles and a wagging tail
you nipped at my heart
with your earnest
affections. I knew you
would lose those needle-sharp
puppy teeth one day, when
you would grow capable
of the full savagery your
playful growls and yips promised.
But I hoped you would never lose
that softness in your eyes,
that adoring nuzzle, and
the shamelessness to ask
for a tummyrub.
                           Oh my dear,
you are not lost--you never
ran away from home; instead,
you stayed and it's the world
that ran away. And now I have
nothing to show of the puppy love
you gave without reservation
but the faint imprint of paws
on the ragged, chewed-up
edges of my soul.

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