Thursday, August 21, 2008

Dog Days


















Yes, they're definitely here. The heat's not so bad, but the air is soggy as a dish rag and leaves me feeling about as limp. It was so humid on the trail this morning that I was ready to lie down and take a nap on the poison ivy. Instead I went to visit a friend and spent a couple of hours sitting on her deck talking with her and her dogs. Then I went home and took a nap. After that I found the energy to spend some time sitting on my porch with my dog.

You might call such behavior lazy. I prefer to think of it as living in harmony with nature.

I couldn't find any good poems about dog days, but here's a lovely sad one you may already know, dedicated to Laika, the first astronaut:

So first the faithful dog will go
and after it a pig or ass
through the black grass will beat a track
along it will the first man steal
who with iron hand will smother
on his glass brow a drop of fear

so first the dog honest mongrel
which has never abandoned us
dreaming of earthly lamps and bones
will fall asleep in its whirling kennel
its warm blood boiling drying away
...(more)

From "First the Dog," by Zbigniew Herbert (1924-1998), translated by Czeslaw Milosz and Peter Dale Scott. Text from Poetry Foundation.

Canis Major from the Uranometria atlas by Johann Bayer, 1603. Image from Wikimedia Commons

3 comments:

chayaruchama said...

Fantastic-
And I like the pictorial, too.
[You KNOW what a sucker I am for canines]

Bottom line :
Either give in, or give up, I say.
Can't change the weather- and New Englanders glory in banging their heads against the wall, just because.

Type A with Type A "sauce", I like to call it.

Wise Gracie.

leopoldo said...

I'm having my own, very special, dog days now...

Sigh.

Hence my infrequent online activity.

BitterGrace said...

"Type A with Type A sauce"--yep, that's perfect. When I was at Mt. Holyoke, people would see me sitting under a tree enjoying a nice day and say--not at all unfriendly--"Don't you have anything to do?" Ha! I still miss Massachusetts, just the same.

Leo--So, you're a puppy daddy? Congratulations! We want name, pictures, adorable anecdotes, ASAP ;-)