Friday, June 18, 2010

Dharma by Billy Collins

My dog, Cody, and one of the many kittens he's rescued from feral catdom and given to us.  He cares for them like a mother cat until they're grown.  A truly kind, compassionate, loving being!!!

by Billy Collins

The way the dog trots out the front door
every morning
without a hat or an umbrella,
without any money
or the keys to her dog house
never fails to fill the saucer of my heart
with milky admiration.

Who provides a finer example
of a life without encumbrance—
Thoreau in his curtainless hut
with a single plate, a single spoon?
Ghandi with his staff and his holy diapers?

Off she goes into the material world
with nothing but her brown coat
and her modest blue collar,
following only her wet nose,
the twin portals of her steady breathing,
followed only by the plume of her tail.

If only she did not shove the cat aside
every morning
and eat all his food
what a model of self-containment she would be,
what a paragon of earthly detachment.
If only she were not so eager
for a rub behind the ears,
so acrobatic in her welcomes,
if only I were not her god.

from "Sailing Alone Around the Room".


Who can not love Billy Collins?  He's the poet of the average man/woman.  I own all of his books.  My only bitch is that he doesn't write fast enough.   :-)  Happy Friday!! 



"Did you ever walk into a room and forget why you walked in? I think that is how dogs spend their lives." ~Sue Murphy


"Any member introducing a dog into the Society's premises shall be liable to a fine of one pound. Any animal leading a blind person shall be deemed to be a cat." ~Oxford Union Society, London, Rule 46


"The reason a dog has so many friends is that he wags his tail instead of his tongue." ~Author Unknown



Sue said...

I'd never read anything by Billy Collins. But I will now.


Teri and the cats of Furrydance said...

Love Mr Collins...was turned on to him by another blogger, Patti Digh of 37 days. Such an evocative poem...he reminds me of The Far Side, but instead of cartoons he writes poems...

Kelly said...


Always nice to see photos of Cody, too.
: )

ds said...

Cody is a gem. Collins' poem is terrific. Thanks.

Woman in a Window said...

And even though this is cat talk, this poem is so fitting for today. I've not seen my sister in a while even though we both live in the same small town. She drove up along side me tonight as I was taking the kids for Slushies after some mad soccer skilz from me. ie, i looked like a fool but kicked the ball around. There was a cat hanging around her house, a stray, and her cats didn't get along with it and her neighbour was going to shoot it this weekend. And so, long story short, the cat's living here now. Ha! Outside cat. And so we fed him and named him and itched him and put a bed out for him. I just heard him messing about on the front porch and so I opened the door and was on my way out, saying, Ah, Louis! When to my surprise, a skunk turned at me and sprayed! Fricken skunks. They're rather too brave.

Anyhow...thought you'd like that. The cat, by the way, is awesomely cool. One glance at him and I was sunk. Louis...

Love that Billy Collins' poem!

Have a beautiful weekend, Marion.


Terresa said...

I just read the Collins poem to my dog-loving husband. We both had a good, late evening chuckle. Thanks for this one!

Jos said...

I love the poem Marion, it made me smile and almost wish I was more of a dog person. But the Oxford Union Society rule made me laugh out loud. I shall have to send it to a friend who still finds it unbelievably impossible to go into some places because of their bloody stupidity about guide dogs. Perhaps this will persuade them. xx Jos

Marion said...

Thank you all for your kind comments. I appreciate you all!

We've had a cat 'situation' at our house this week. I was going to mention it after Erin's skunk/cat comment (sorry, Erin, but you cracked me UP!) but then decided to make it a blog post for next week. As usual in my crazy family, it's hilarious. In the mean time, enjoy the cool dancing guy. He cheers me up every time I watch him. Blessings!!! xoxo