On our walk, my dog and I, we take this same path every day,
though it’s not same as last year or yesterday —
she knows this.

She sniffs the new story from the day’s knowledge-filled air,
nuzzles in the playful soil and the sweet,
summery green body of a baby leaf — she’s thrilled.

On her leash, she pulls — I pull back like I know more
or have some better place to go.
She hungers for everything and I don’t know anything.

I only see where I am: swimming upstream
in a mind that worries
when the hungry tide might take me undersea,
though it hasn’t — not yet,

despite my heart’s breaking, or when my eating
got disordered, or when my car flipped over on the interstate,
but I was still breathing, am still breathing.

Yet, somehow, I still forget
the crawl through that window, broken,
how the pavement was burning,

and how I heard it all around me
ringing like the angels with their clearest A tuning
every instrument of Earth’s orchestra
alive. I said, “I am alive!” to everyone
and everything around me that day.

And I think what it must be like
to feel that every day, like my dog.
She knows
it’s a blessing just to be here.


On a recent New Yorker Poetry Podcast episode, host and poet Kevin Young mentioned that both poems and trauma live in the body. If this is true, I’m glad that this poem found my car accident from a September several years ago.

Rosie by the sea

Writing and photography by: Katy Claire Funke

19 thoughts on “A blessing

  1. Oh my goodness Katy. What an experience. I get that feeling of glad to be alive, following my cancer where I nearly died. I think to myself sometimes, “Gosh, I am ALIVE.” Beautiful words Katy. ❤️

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Beautiful poem & beautiful dog you have….what a crazy thing you went through…..am glad you’ve turned the trauma to something positive…..and have even made it appear beautiful through the power of your words ❤️✨

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Beautifully narrated…trauma opens up parts of our subconscious and we go through tunnels where we discover many things and come out the same but with many more sensitivities…dogs are very interesting as they live the moment, I think they’ve much to teach us if we were only willing to learn, as you are Katy. Loved this post, take good care and all the best,
    Greetings from Spain

    Liked by 1 person

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