After My Little Black Dog Died of Melanoma. After the Lumps on Her Small Brittle Body Slowly Burned to a Pile of Ash in the Vet’s Office. After My Step-Father Drove in His Ostentatious Truck to Pick Up Her Remains. After I Cried in My Dorm Room and Tried Not to Wake My Roommate. Realization that My Loss Does Not Make Me Different. There Are Graveyards That Span For Miles and They Are Filled With More Dead Bodies Than I Have Ever Seen. There Are Hundreds of Thousands of Children in the Foster Care System That Have Never Met Their Parents or Maybe They Did and it Just Didn’t Work Out. Kids Who Might Have Lived With Their Terminally Ill Parent(s) For Years Not Just Days. Kids Who Never Sat in the Opened Up Trunk of Their Mother’s Black Nissan Pathfinder at the Drive-In Movies. Kids Who Lived Too Far From Their Too Old Grandparents or Who Lived Too Far From Their Too Dead Grandparents. Kids Who Were Never Told Not to Throw Snowballs Because There Might be Big Chunks of Ice in Them. Kids Who Never Had a Childhood Dog to Cry Over. Kids Who Don’t Like to Read Because They Were Never Read Bedtime Stories When They Were Younger. Kids Whose Mothers Never Called Them Tweetie or Pumpkin or Honey or ***. Kids That Were Not Told to Just Go to the Bathroom When Their Tummies Hurt Instead of the Health Room. Kids Who Never Listened to the Spice Girls’ Album Spice World on Cassette on the Way to the Store. Kids Who Never Got a Peach Drink Out of a Vending Machine at the Pick’N’Save on 27th Street and Still Don’t Know Exactly What 50¢ Peach Drink Their Mother Bought For Them. There Are Thousands of Dogs Euthanized Each Day Because of How Sick They Are or Because They Were at a Shelter For Far Too Long or Because They Are a Pitbull or a Rottweiler or Some Other Irrationally Feared and Disliked Dog Breed. We Didn’t Euthanize My Stage-Four-Cancer-Stricken Dog or Even Get Her Treatment Beyond Pain Medicine Because We Were Selfish. We Do a Lot of Things Because We Are Selfish. We Waited Five Days to Pull the Plug on My Vegetable Mother Because We Were Waiting For a Miracle That We Knew Would Never Happen Because She Stopped Breathing the Moment the Aneurysm Burst. My Sister is Getting Married in June and My Grandfather is Going to Walk Her Down the Aisle in My Mother’s Place. My Grandparents Had to Move In With My Sister After My Grandmother Fell Down Too Many Times and Didn’t Take Her Health Problems Serious Enough. There Are Repercussions For Thinking You Are Safe When You Are Really Not.
Imitation poem of James Shea's "Haiku." Written for my Advanced Poetry Workshop.