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Sport 35: Winter 2007

Blind man running

page 181

Blind man running

I just expect calmness, that's all,
a hand cautious on the doorknob.

So when this man and his
German Shepherd come
charging down Willis Street—
well, hell,

this is not how it is done—
he with his hard shoes clicking on the pavement,
the dog with its world-loving tongue,
only a line of red nylon between them.

You know what will happen when they do this:

first they will hit the conversation
of two loud women,
send fat wrists flying
to the concrete.

Then he will catch his foot on a
flapping shop sign,
lose his sunglasses as he whirls around.

Then finally they will hurtle into the wooden stall
of a man roasting peanuts,
they will break his perfect concentration and
scatter the warm dots everywhere.

They run all night for me, the dog
and the man, held together by the
most tenuous red strap.

I can't even tell who is leading.