The dog stops long enough to study me in repose
at the helm of the sink
gazing on the hand neatly framed in the window
on the backyard feeders
dreading delivery of another capricious command
arm a spar casting a shadow of doubt
across the deck, cupped palm
trimmed to catch the watery light.
No stranger to the sea
head tilted, she awaits her orders
pretends not to notice we’re becalmed
bobbing paired in the doldrums
the life line
that hairy twist of sisal twine we palm for luck
maps an estuary
at the mouth of a meandering river arrived at last.
I offer my hand
she turns up her nose
sweet water gone brackish on the turning tide.