The Bird and The Dog
(This article first appeared at powerpoetry.org on 9 Feb. 2014)
The bird carves out a sweeping arc, across the northern sky,
The apparent utter weightlessness, accounts the dog a wry
Grin, at such a sight of speed and easy grace.
He’s knows he’s not acquainted with such forte nor such pace.
For the dog has spent his centuries, feet firmly on the earth,
His easy swinging, travelling gait, a product of his birth.
For he was born with the scent of rain tickling his nose,
And the knowingness of who he is, running through his bones.
Withal the bird did come, from under that same sky,
Her anti-social tendency, distinguished by her cry.
Into the air, somewhere above, a shrill so sharp and bright,
As if for her, not far behind, leered creatures of the night.
For the bird carried a brittleness, a pale anxiety,
She typifies a deeper fear, a lonesome purgatory.
Her beauty and her winsomeness are something to behold,
But her solitary life ensures disquiet can take it’s hold.
For the dog he knew that life was grand, and would always hold it’s sway,
Despite that fact he could not fly, did not get in his way.
For the soaring heights and dizzy speeds, for which he was not known,
Seemed out of place and out of time, it hardly was his home.
The bird however, could not grasp, how creatures great and small,
Could not alight on branch and bough, to her it was apall,
To trawl across the land, bound by hoof and heel and toe,
Forever cursed to use their feet, enslaven to the road.
And what would be most wonderful, and help offset the night,
Was if the bird and dog could speak, and talk about their plight.
The relief that would unburden, from their simple chat,
The dog would tell her how it is, and what he thinks is that.
And she in turn would speak her piece, revealing all it was,
That made her tick, that made her sing, her distant solo cause.
For both the bird and dog this would unlock for them a new,
Deeper sense of oneness, which would always get them through.
But if one thought that musings, trivial may seem,
The animal’s instinctive limits, a process there has been.
For it shan’t take long for one to see, an observer from afar,
That the dog was much more social and the bird was singular.
For socialness in every case means gather closer in,
Time has shown, the more you do the more aware you’ve been.
For each of us is garnered by our contact and the touch,
Of one another, bird or beast, the development of much.
Particularly so, for us who sprung, from our bipedal past,
We’re built for contact, family groups, our socialness is cast.
Driven by an instinctive strength, that’s so long left unlooked,
The magic of the human soul rarely mentioned in our books.
And so it was the bird and dog, are driven by the same,
But without the weight of consciousness, they play a different game.
They walk their line of destiny with calm obedience,
The limits of their mental mind, of no significance.
Alas for us, ‘twas not the case ‘cause we can understand,
Cause, effect and contemplation – on these alone we stand.
But while “Nature’s crowning glory” is a title we receive,
Our actions suggest otherwise, and species-wide we need,
Constant reassurance that our lives are not a mess,
And over-stimulation to avoid unhappiness.
For reality, despite what you’d think, is fairly hard to spot,
With everyone who madly strives to be what they are not.
O’ to be a bird or dog and have not try to sway!
And avoid the sense we can’t control, all that’s in our way.
For we have jetted to the moon among all achievement’s grand,
But we also stumble for an answer to a child’s simple demand.
But if you could explain to me how so can it be all,
And if you would outline the story, starting historical.
Then I would listen, I would pause from how I done my things,
And think about the bird upon the warm, northerly wind.
For yes, the bird and dog they have their psychic struggles small,
They know no contradictions like the ones that haunt us all.
But swap it once, I would not, for all the gold could bring,
They can keep their ignorance, the birds can have their sing.
We are, as Banjo put it “one vast united brotherhood”.
For the key to the human condition, now brought to timely light,
Provides those first few principles and freedom from our plight.