Elegy for Saisy Joy


Our Saisy never really shook off that early abuse,

the beatings, starvation, the two-foot chain.

She’d wince when you went to pet her,

snap if you rubbed her head for too long.

As her rescue “foster mom” in Statesboro put it,

“That gal’s got her some food issues.”

Like stealing bread and hiding pieces ‘round the house,

gobbling down the rankest roadside carcass, knocking over

garbage cans, consuming their rotten whatever.

Afterwards, her Stygian, Technicolor diarrhea

would ruin our rugs.


Yet the rescuer’s daughter named her Joy

for that dervish dance when you’d grab a leash.

She’d rear and buck like a bronco, jump, hump her back,

swivel in a circle, smile like a very happy cartoon dog.

And what a beauty! that black slick fur, the brown undercoat,

distinctive of one of her breeds, the German Longhaired Pointer part.

On the beach or through the woods to the dock she’d strut,

a country beauty proud of her charms.

Indifferent to birds and squirrels, she hated cats,

despised UPS trucks. Her frantic bark was acquainted

with the dark — PTSD the vet once guessed.


That morning there would be no dance. She had died

in her sleep, and lay there on the rug peacefully unaware,

her eyes closed. She didn’t look dead, was barely cold,

but her teeth were clenched: no more biting, eating,

romping, barking, being. She hadn’t seemed sick,

was playful during her very last walk twelve hours ago.

To her it probably wouldn’t matter much, the vacancy

we feel when we return from work or a trip.

I can still see her, though, at the top of the stairs,

beginning that dance, nodding her head, smiling,

humping her back, clicking her nails on the wooden floor.

saisy profile (original)

Miss Saisy

8 thoughts on “Elegy for Saisy Joy

  1. Pingback: Dog Gone – You Do Hoodoo?

  2. Pingback: Into the mystic – You Do Hoodoo?

  3. Pingback: If Dogs Run Free – You Do Hoodoo?

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s