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          Dog Walks
          By Taylor Graham

          Past the garden and the neighbors'
          split-rail fence, out the ridge
          to see if yellow tarweed is suddenly
          in flower, the last gold of August
          into September.

          The same route, late December mornings
          when ponderosa bows under the weight
          of last night's snow, the air
          splintering frost-flakes
          in the nostrils.

          Always the same path: the dog and I
          tracing familiar patterns
          from the pinewood door and back.

          And now, at 3 in the morning
          without a flashlight--

          the old dog's so urgent
          for me to follow through the dark,
          leading me away from home
          that's held us so long to our lives;
          leading me away from everything
          we've known.

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Document last modified on: 01/06/2007

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