Ode to Maiya
by Jessica Goody
You sit at the top of the stairs, willing us home.
When the door bursts open you spin in delight.
It is worth leaving just to receive your ecstatic
homecoming: you meet us at the door, dancing
around our feet, unwilling to wait for us to take
off our coats or set down the groceries before
you anoint us with kisses. The sunlight stripes
the rug where you lay surrounded by humans,
emitting a shuddering sigh of pure contentment.
Your shiny dark eyes are limpid as you beg for
table tidbits. You eat like no other dog, vegetarian
from birth, preferring rice, fruit slices, seaweed,
a noodle plucked from a plate of pasta and slurped
so that the sauce flies and stains your fuzzy chin.
Curling up in the dry tub like a rodent in its burrow,
you wait for someone with opposable thumbs to man
the taps. Once soaked, you squirm from fluffy towels,
preferring to dry yourself on a freshly-made bed.
You are a loafer, a lounger, a lapdog, apathetic to
any and all sporting activities, unable to fathom
why other dogs chase these round missiles with
such delight. Your cheerful skip is that of a lamb
gamboling in a carpeted field, your fur sometimes
blonde, sometimes white. You adore riding in the
car; in your mind you are Amelia Earhart taking
flight, a daring aviatrix. Your tongue lolls from
your grin, ears blown back from the open window.
Jessica Goody was born and raised on Long Island. She currently lives in South Carolina, where she writes for SunSations Magazine. Her work has appeared in numerous publications, including Reader’s Digest, The Seventh Wave, Event Horizon, Really System, Chicken Soup for the Soul, and The Maine Review. Her poem “Stockings” was awarded second place in the 2015 Reader’s Digest Poetry Competition. Her poetry collection Defense Mechanisms will be released by Phosphene Publishing in January 2017.