• awmace

April 8, 2020: The Pardon

This is my all-time favorite "dog" poem. Exquisite phrasing, imagery, music.


by Richard Wilbur (1921-2017)

My dog lay dead five days without a grave In the thick of summer, hid in a clump of pine And a jungle of grass and honey-suckle vine. I who had loved him while he kept alive Went only close enough to where he was To sniff the heavy honeysuckle-smell Twined with another odor heavier still And hear the flies' intolerable buzz. Well, I was ten and very much afraid. In my kind world the dead were out of range And I could not forgive the sad or strange In beast or man. My father took the spade And buried him. Last night I saw the grass Slowly divide (it was the same scene But now it glowed a fierce and mortal green) And saw the dog emerging. I confess I felt afraid again, but still he came In the carnal sun, clothed in a hymn of flies, And death was breeding in his lively eyes. I started in to cry and call his name, Asking forgiveness of his tongueless head. ... I dreamt the past was never past redeeming: But whether this was false or honest dreaming I beg death's pardon now. And mourn the dead.

6 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All

April 9, 2020: More Than This

This is the title poem for David Kirby's collection, MORE THAN THIS, which I have finally managed to pry from David Havird's fingers. It's available from LSU Press, which is having a fantastic 40% off

April 7: I Dreamed of Being Mothered by a Cat

Even we dog people can identify with this poem of longing by Julie Kane, from her new book from LSU Press, MOTHERS OF IRELAND. I Dreamed of Being Mothered by a Cat I dreamed of being mothered by a cat

April 6, 2020: Deer Among Cattle

Another poem for Easter week, by the great poet and my long-ago teacher, James Dickey, whose poetry readings set the room on fire. DEER AMONG CATTLE by James Dickey Here and there in the searing be


  • Twitter Social Icon
  • Google+ Social Icon
  • Facebook Classic

© 2023 by Samanta Jonse. Proudly created with

This site was designed with the
website builder. Create your website today.
Start Now