Today's poem is by Stephen Cushman

Smaller Dog

We can't all be
brightest in the sky

or the biggest guy
in outer space.

But I don't envy
anybody's place

or need to feel
I have no worth

because I'm far
from Orion's heel.

My yellow-white
double star

delivers its light
to nearby Earth

in eleven years flat,
which is pretty fast,

but my other boast
is Helen: she

loved me most
of all her hounds,

and you can't beat that.
So I, unsurpassed

in her esteem,
made no sounds

when secretly
they left for Troy.

He was the dream
igniting the dark

scarcity of joy.
How could I bark?

Copyright © 2006 Stephen Cushman All rights reserved
from Southwest Review
Reprinted by Verse Daily® with permission

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