Poem that makes me think – We have no choice in the bodies that hold us, Holly Amos


Thing of dirt and water and oxygen marked by thinking
and reacting and a couch
one may or may not be permitted
to sleep on. He may not permit me
to touch him or to take the bone
from his mouth, but he does, and that’s a choice
based on many factors, not the least of which
is his own desire to let me
do these things. How I could ever
think or feel myself more
deserving of a single thing than
this being, whom I call by a name the same way
my parents chose a name for me. The same way my genes
went expressing themselves to make my face exactly
my face. This isn’t special. Or this is special. But it’s one
answer, the same, for us both.

We have no choice in the bodies that hold us

It’s true; we don’t, as far as we know, anyway, have any choice about what bodies we are born into. No soul, so far as our understanding teaches us, seeks out life as a panda in a zoo in China or a cricket chirruping away in a backyard in Iowa. This poem is a little, nudging reminder of that; the speaker talks about the dog she has clearly just adopted or bought, and how he impacts her life as she impacts is. For anyone who has never had the pleasure of coming home to a dog that’s never sick of seeing you, there really is something very special about pet ownership/cohabitation 🙂




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