Poodles of the arboretum!
Sculpted, trimmed, and pampered into
snappish if you get too close.
The solemn oaks, great danes, stand attentive;
redwood mastiffs glower intimidation
at everyone smaller than them;
and the playful aspen collies
frisk about, dancing, never still.
Elm trees catch kites like frisbees.
They are still learning the second half of "fetch"
and are confused at our discontent. Why
can we never find a golden retriever
to play with instead?
Puggish rose bushes and ornamental dogwoods
scatter yipping through the park,
and lazy bougainvillea spaniels drape themselves
on the edges of everything.
Setter, dachsund, beagle,
terrier and pomeranian;
cherry, olive, myrtle,
dwarf willow and piñon pine.
A bewildering variety
each of them man's best friend.