Loving for beginners (for Isa)
Focused fur. Always moving, looking
for something new, nervously curious
dark eyes sparkling, while your nose seeks.
Taking love graciously, soft to our touch
but never owned, always moving, looking
for something beyond. Sunflowers?
Or poetry? You have no time for
speaking (or listening, or yearning)
solitary creature, so warm to our touch.
Loving for beginners, you don’t ask
for much. Some water and dry straw,
a peanut a day, space to run.
In return, focused fur, warm and
responsive, just more than a toy: loving
for beginners, my daughter and I.
This is a poem for my daughter’s hamster, Isa. Isa is our fourth hamster and by far the most intelligent and lively and easiest to relate to. I’m not sure how I know this, or how hamsters have characters, but if they could speak and I had to choose one to take out for a drink, it would be Isa (although she’s getting on now, like me).