Issue 7 – Sayler

Mary Harwell Sayler

Telling a Love Story

Everyone has a story.

Everyone has a plot to complete
with character,
with motivation.

Sometimes when the TV
turns off my desire to sleep,
I keep thinking of these things –
like the lovely dog we rescued
from a shelter. Someone
took time to train him, so why
turn him out?

Notice how his legs
and ears stand at attention
when he hears a young child cry
and how he shies away
from our gas grill.

Did a fire burn down his
people’s house? Did his first
family divorce or deploy to Iraq
or cram themselves into a small
condo with no backyard?

Well, he’s ours now –
half-shepherd, half-chow,
and maybe only half ours,
but he comes when we say
his new name, and he obeys us –
or someone else – someone
who knows the whole
love story and not just this
mystery with the first page