Mary Oliver





Show Time

And here come the dogs. Brushed, trimmed,
polished.

“what on earth have they done to them!”
said Ricky. “They’re half shaved. And
wearing pillows on their heads. And
where are their tails?”

It’s the rules, I said.

“And look at those women trying to run.
They sure don’t look like you.”

Thank you, I said.

“I’m getting a headache looking at this.
I have to bark!” And he began.

It does no good to bark at the television,
I said. I’ve tried it too. So he stopped.

“If I ever meet one of these dogs I’m going
to invite him to come here, where he can
be a proper dog.”

Okay, I said. But remember, you can’t fix
everything in the world for everybody.

“However,” said Ricky, “you can’t do 
anything at all unless you begin. Haven’t
I heard you say that once or twice, or
maybe a hundred times?”