I was crying
and I blamed it on the sad story
I was reading
about a dog that died
but whose spirit filled the room
and maybe the whole house,
maybe the whole country!
I was crying not because of the story
but because it occurred to me that I was alone
and no one might love me quite like that dog
loved its human
and I swear the geranium on the windowsill,
all Valentine-heart red and mid-summer green
said, Oh for crying out loud
(which I was)
don’t be silly.
You’re hardly alone
And I realized that was true,
that I was surrounded on all sides by life
and that some of its forms
(family, friends, cat, the chicken next door -
even, possibly, the geranium)
maybe more than I loved myself.
I felt better after that
and was able to get back to the rest of the book
and the rest of my life.