Rejected

Jeffrey Park

Had to get rid of him, she said, no choice,
had to be done.
          Was it the floppy ears? I asked.
No, it wasn’t that.
          Was it the waggly tail?
No, not the waggly tail.
          The sad soulful eyes then? I could imagine
          the eyes might have done it.
No, not exactly, she said.
No, it was the way he listened
so intently all the time, like he was trying
to memorize everything
I was saying, including things that someday
maybe a long time from now
I wouldn’t want to be reminded of.
Like he was recording
every stupid, pointless comment
that came from my lips.
          So…the way he listened.
Yes. The way he listened.
And maybe
the waggly tail as well.

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