A Poem: The owner and the dog

The owner and the dog

With steady steps they walked together,
a dog and its owner.

They went left, then right, then left again,
and made a path through the neighborhood.

Then walking by some grass,
  the dog saw something,
and pulled with a tug at the leash.
They went left, then right, then left again,
and as the owner held the leash,
to keep the dog from running,
both tumbled around.

When stillness came,
and the owner breathed and felt calm,
  the dog sat still.

The owner looked,
  the dog sat still –
  sitting,
   not laying down,
   or standing,
  sitting still,
  panting softly.

The owner thought,
“The dog never sits during walks,
never.”

Inside,
the heart went left, then right, then left again,
as the owner worried for the dog:
  torn nail?
  sprained ankle?
  broken leg?
  Why sitting?  There must be something wrong.

The owner stooped,
and looked,
and saw the dog’s legs –
  the dog sat still,
  and panted softly,
they looked alright.

With eyes to eyes,
the owner looked at the dog,
  who seemed awash in contentment.

The owner thought:
  torn nail?
  sprained ankle?
  broken leg?
No.
No crying,
no whimpering,
no sign of anything,
  just sitting still.

The owner stood back,
and pulled the leash lightly,
  the dog sat still.

The owner asked,
“Is everything alright?”
  The dog sat still.

In the distance,
what at first looked like wolves,
and then like dogs,
and then like deer (which they were),
crossed the street in the darkness,
  the dog sat still.

“Why no getting up,
why no need to chase?”

As the owner stood and thought,
and felt worried,
and puzzled,
  then the dog stood up,
  and walked again.

Everything seemed fine.

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