has found the vines on the common fence.
My neighbor, fond of bottles,
goes around spraying when he's sober enough--
whole years go by when he's not.
I love the vines, the green view, their wild blind reaching.
They have more faith than a cleric,
more will than any new arrival with a nickel.
The vines are sick and brown on the neighbor's side,
thick and green on mine, and yet,
at the tips of the sick stems healthy tendrils have appeared.
Each morning I go out with my dog to check the vines.
I move slowly. Sleep is an old love whose face is a memory.
The seasons come and go, one dog is followed by a new one.
I worry for the vines, though they seem to be immortal.
The neighbor is the third there's been on that side.
My dog is the seventh of seven and may be a charmed soul.
I can't remember when the vines first appeared, or how the sun
got so high. Ten years go by in an afternoon.
I'm tired and call my dog to go inside. He follows me instantly,
with no thought for the vines, and no doubt at all
that he should follow me. I could cry for loving him so.