How many lessons can you learn from one dog?

One complicated dog  –

Patience is the one that comes to mind and of course

Gigantic love;

The art of the breath

And I can do this –

Big determination


I’m laughing at your funny looks

The wiggling

You greeting with entirety

The strangers who are friends

And those already enslaved by your cuteness

Happy singing tail

Short legs

The sad, wise eyes.


Then at home –

The nervous tears

Your stubbornness

The insistent crying, “Give me what I want!”

“You are driving me crazy!” I yell

We look at each other, the stare-off

And then I smile and surrender –

Call upon the patience

And love again –

The long, velvet ears

The kisses and licks

Short, soft fur

Long nose


Now you are all spirit

I follow your path

Low to the ground

Big determination

Love gigantic

Wagging body

Full of heart


©Abigler 2015

adorable brody (2)


I should have bowed down

And surrendered

Every day


I should have told you

I could see you


Like the wings of all those geese

Who flew away

When we could not


Our minds are different

Every nuance

Every chord

Like tight wound wire



All the songs and visions


The feelings come in swarms

Through skin and bone

And brain

All those nerves

Are reaching

For a breath

Within the flame


Without it

Where would words be?

Would summer be so deep and hot?



Can we live without ourselves?

Maybe, for a day

What then?

A quiet respite

In an angry, tired grave?


You have a light


To the weight

Of all these




Till you bow down

Head to earth

And shed the blame


© Angela Bigler 2013




photo credit: chiaralily via photopin cc

the leap between

On February 29, 2000, my mom leaped between worlds to a new place where I could not see. I drowned without warning, unable to swim as my roots were now tangled around me. To return to land, I took my own leap through cold time, dark embers, and hologram waves of the psyche. I since came around to myself, but recast. Death must be something like that, a luminous transformation where the soul is returned to the source but now changed.

The thing about the Leap Day loss is I have more comings than goings. Each August, we dine on her favorites, sweet corn on the cob and ripe peaches. All of us feel the heat and the storms. The lightning is common and deep.  The roots of the willow rise up to meet the lily, hydrangea and lilac. We are dressed up and singing like heaven or love when just born and celestial. Your heart, that is summer, her birthday. The day she arrived in this world.

When Leap Day does come it is rare and strange to see the occasion marked there on the wall. What else can I write in the square? Most years send the gift of detachment but here it is staring me back. Is there really a way to escape? Perhaps the void between the 28th and the 1st is the space the most real because I make that leap every day – every time I leap back to her darkness and light. Every time I leap back to myself.

© Angela Bigler 2012


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