Bill

Bill
for Cindy

It was his nature to run
so he ran.
Ran in hours, not miles,
with no map other than
genetic memory.
He ran deep.

His hip had never healed.
He ran with a leg-dragging gait
mistaken as disability.
He ran with no gesture
that could be taken
as bitterness.
He ran true.

He ran for days with
the even clip of
a wind-blown boat.
He didn’t need to tack.
He ran direct.

When he tired, he still ran
until the need to run ran out
and then he’d find a porch
by a door, usually a woman’s door—
he preferred women—
and sit and wait to be found.

Having learned to suppress
her panic, Cindy was waiting
for the call. Your dog
is on my porch. I don’t know how
he got here, it’s so far.
Sometimes
she had to look up the town
on a map, although she’d lived
in Rochester for decades

Bill was waiting when she’d
drive up and open the door.
Settling into the passenger seat,
he’d smile, nuzzle her hand.

To love any being with its own
purpose, its own work,
you learn the compromise
between how you think
the world should be and how
your love needs to live.
And if you are lucky
these distance between these
is only as far
as a husky can run.

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