A Poem for a Thursday #48

Photo by Tom Rumble on Unsplash
Our neighbor got a dog. It barks. It barks a lot. Last night it barked for 95 minutes straight; yes, I timed it. We have tried talking to her and she just got angry with us. We have tried contacting animal control and they just ignored us.

I am ready to move. If anyone has a little farmhouse in the middle of nowhere we can rent that would be great. It has to have no neighbors. Though my husband says we could build a house in the Sahara Desert and someone would buy the next dune and move in with a yapping dog. Probably true.

Billy Collins wrote a poem about a barking dog. Here it is.

The neighbors' dog will not stop barking.
He is barking the same high, rhythmic bark
that he barks every time they leave the house.
They must switch him on on their way out.

The neighbors' dog will not stop barking.
I close all the windows in the house
and put on a Beethoven symphony full blast
but I can still hear him muffled under the music,
barking, barking, barking.

and now I can see him sitting in the orchestra,
his head raised confidently as if Beethoven
had included a part for barking dog.

When the record finally ends he is still barking,
sitting there in the oboe section barking,
his eyes fixed on the conductor who is
entreating him with his baton

while the other musicians listen in respectful
silence to the famous barking dog solo,
that endless coda that first established
Beethoven as an innovative genius. 

Another Reason Why I Don't Keep a Gun in the House
Billy Collins

Reese is sharing a Dorothy Parker poem today.

6 comments

  1. Ah, yes - the title of the poem is perfect.

    So sorry you have to endure this, and dismayed that the owner doesn't try to do something. There are responsibilities that come with being a pet owner.

    We are fortunate to live in the country - about 100 yards from our nearest neighbour. Very peaceful. And quiet. You're welcome to visit. :-)

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    1. Ahh, that sounds like a lovely place to live. Right now, all I really ask for is a bit of quiet. The dog was barking at 6:00 a.m. today.

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  2. It's definitely the title that really sells this poem. Well, that and the image of the dog solo.

    We had a neighbor whose dog bit my kid. Then the owner said, "Oh, I thought he didn't do that any more." Then six months later he bit my other kid, and we called animal control, and they didn't do anything. We have a shared common area behind the houses on our street, and the kids wouldn't go out to play when the guy had his dog out. We were SO HAPPY when they moved. Oh! The owner was also president of our HOA, so that venue for solving it was not really helpful.

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    1. The dog bit your kids and animal control wouldn't do anything?! That is ridiculous. Why is it so hard to get people to be considerate. At least they moved away finally.

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  3. Sounds like the only consolation you can take at the moment, is finding the perfect poem to fit your circumstances!
    Living in inner city Sydney for the past decade, I too have had to deal with annoying neighbour noises - from screaming kids, to screaming parents, yappy dogs, neighbours constantly renovating, super loud TV's and now 2 young men who constantly smoke pot in their backyard....that is right underneath our kitchen window!
    But then, when I lived in the country, it was neighbours revving their cars, constantly mowing their lawns or that dratted rooster who woke everyone up at 5am every single day!

    Good luck - my suggestion for now - buy ear muffs or turn the tv/radio up!

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    1. We aren't bothered too much by most noises but an incessantly barking dog is very hard to tune out. I don't know why people are so inconsiderate.

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