our nieghbor’s dog
a small little thing
cowered in the road
was cute enough to stop
the two cars in the road
to find it’s home
we came off our porches
stood in our yards
under a boiling hot sun
with hands over our eyes

then it was home
everyone left
the silence in the heat
cooked the memory
of riding with my grandfather
in a rusted out truck
looking out the back window
as we left my three legged dog
and her puppies on the bank
of the Licking River 
she looked worried and unsure
I promised I wouldn’t cry
so I could go and say goodbye
I was certain we were going to hell

even now I wish I could have 
done something
but who listens
to an eight year old
that no one really wanted

I might have been
better off
if I had been left
with that dog