Katherine Bogden
A Glimpse of You at the Dog Park After Two Years of Absence

Like the distant sound of your name called on the street

you can just hear, but then, turning, aren't sure you heard at all,

the second of hesitation

before the matador pulls the muleta

and the bull runs by — like picking up the phone to call Bill

and remembering he's dead;

     It is the moment after the moment

you realize you're speeding but the deer is already stepping into the road.

When the Cat is Away

We speak about God.  Life, you explain, is purely physical and
God is love—a complicated chemical reaction.  I laugh at

your idealism, and you say,
Why? What is life to you, what makes us more than this, gesturing
at the unmade bed and paper-filled coffee table.
I tell you life is not just primitive instinct but abstract thought and

God is acceptance, is releasing
yourself from yourself; believing in the feeling
of a tree's bark—its linear coarseness.
It is not questioning the physicality in the sound of the garbage truck

pulling away—part of your life inside.
Isn't that love? You want to know—isn't
love a feeling that passes through the body
like sunlight through glass, emerging elsewhere

unchanged? You speak with confidence
in your knowledge, as if you have climbed Kilimanjaro and
at the top, found in the melting glacier, a note from
some almighty Buddha crumpled inside and suddenly

you know the truth in the divine nature of the pine cone, the East River
the cobble-stone street. You know
that at the end of the world, our consciousness will cease and the something
      that is  beyond our comprehension
will go on

without us. And what will be lost?
If you could return home with me, see my cat sitting
in the window, watching the pigeons cooing then silently
lifting off the sill;

if you could lay here, beside me, feel the weight of her
on your chest, the lifting and
falling, bringing a sudden consciousness of your breath; you will
realize it is not love that keeps you still, waiting

for her to rise, long after you needed to use the bathroom, but the recognition
that her body
contains all the answers to the world.
I imagine you, in this moment—shocked

that somehow you never noticed God
sleeping in the window; or casually stretching across the floor.