Let's Roar, Your Honor
To scream with pain, to cry, to summon help, to call
generally—all that is described here as "roaring."
In Siberia not only bears roar, but sparrows and mice as well.
"The cat got it, and it's roaring," they say of a mouse.
- from "Across Siberia,"
by Anton Chekhov.
"Let's Roar, Your Honor" from All Of Us: The Collected Poems The Harvill Press, 1996. Copyright © 1996 by Tess Gallagher.
Found poetry in "Across Siberia" by Anton Chekhov from The Unknown Chekhov, translated by Avrahm Yarmolinksy, Farrar, Straus And Giroux, 1954. Copyright © 1982 by Babette Devtsch Yarmolinsky.
Your Dog Dies
it gets run over by a van.
you find it at the side of the road
and bury it.
you feel bad about it.
you feel bad personally,
but you feel bad for your daughter
because it was her pet,
and she loved it so.
she used to croon to it
and let it sleep in her bed.
you write a poem about it.
you call it a poem for your daughter,
about the dog getting run over by a van
and how you looked after it,
took it out into the woods
and buried it deep, deep,
and that poem turns out so good
you're almost glad the little dog
was run over, or else you'd never
have written that good poem.
then you sit down to write
a poem about writing a poem
about the death of that dog,
but while you're writing you
hear a woman scream
your name, your first name,
and your heart stops.
after a minute, you continue writing.
she screams again.
you wonder how long this can go on.
"Your Dog Dies" from All Of Us: The Collected Poems The Harvill Press, 1996. Copyright © 1996 by Tess Gallagher.