FoundlingReview

HomeAboutWritersGoodReadsArchives





Driving
Under a stormy gray April sky
On a vacation day

Through neighborhoods of ramshackle houses
Where I rarely pass
I notice on a dirty, sagging front porch
Chained to a post
An ugly, yellow dog

The hound is thrown together from leftover parts
Ears ridiculously large for such a small head
Bobbling on its wobbly neck on top of the swollen belly

It watches me pass
Slowly
And I see the squalor
A no trespassing sign taped to a window in front
With black electrician's tape

The dog looks embarrassed
I don't blame it
Our minds lock briefly and then I drive on
Thinking about my extraordinary life.




William Cully Bryant is a physician, author and Associate Editor for OAK BEND REVIEW.   His writing can be found or is forthcoming in dozens of journals including, but not limited to: CLAPBOARD HOUSE, UNDERGROUND VOICES, BEESWAX, AMPERSAND and THE DISTILLERY.  His writing spans many genres and he has just completed his first novel, Messages.  Contact  Cully at cbryant85@msn.com




This poem happened exactly how it is written.  I was driving through a disadvantaged section of town and noticed this very ugly dog sitting on the porch of a dilapidated home.  It was so ugly I actually felt a bit embarrassed for it.  I thought the dog's ugliness and my relative advantages compared to it were poignant.  When I arrived home I sat down and wrote the poem immediately. It probably took five minutes to write - which seems to be true of most of my poetry. 

I almost always write spur of the moment and from the gut.  I almost never look for clever rhymes, alliteration or meter.  I don't sit down and think, "I'm going to write a few poems today." Rather, things occur in my life and I will think, "Hmm, that would make a good poem." I then write the poem as it appears to me at that moment and generally leave it at that. 
 
"The Ugly Dog" was rejected by 6 or 7 journals and I had almost relegated it to my pile of never-to-be-published work when Foundling Review picked it up.

  


Copyright 2009