Sunday, August 18, 2013

A Poem by Taylor Graham

Geology of Teeth

The puppy has left

jagged enamel
with a drop of blood at the root

on the bedspread this morning:
pre-molar, mini-Sierra.
The Minarets, The Needle -

sharp rock of puppy-tooth.

Geography of peaks and passes.
Take her out on leash,
she pulls me toward horizon,

aspiring to know

Earth's whole landscape by scent,
by taste, by tooth,

a world entire to a dog's mouth.

Teeth that itch to grab
and hold - tug-toy, my hand.

Teeth that ache for news-

paper, my left boot, this very
moment, Life.  She leaves

scant evidence
on the bed:  sawtooth puppy
fragment.  Fossil

of her time already past.

Taylor Graham is a volunteer search-and-rescue dog handler in the Sierra Nevada.  She's included in the anthologies (Everyman's Library) and California Poetry:  From the Gold Rush to the Present.  Her book What the Wind Says, poems about living with her canine search partners, is due out later this year; and her latest chapbook, Walking the Puppy, is about to be released by Lummox Press.

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