Philip Belcher: "Another Good Morning"


Across the room, the dog’s chest swells and sinks

like the Mediterranean on a blue and windless day.


Her snoring hums both alto and bass, and the thin

snare rolling beneath suggests a rest that’s ocean deep.


The rain drums a soft stroll on the roof, and I sit alone

with the dog, wrapped in a sea-green fleece, reading


Pavese and watching January’s choir of sparrows gather

in the drizzle to assail a meddling hawk.  Their early


industry does not embarrass me into action or coax

more than a stretch in the rocking chair.  I’m hiking


a vineyard above Santo Stefano Belbo, and the wind

in the grapes sounds like the breath of a sleeping hound.



Philip Belcher is the president of the Mary Black Foundation, a health philanthropy in Spartanburg, S.C., and the author of a chapbook, The Flies and Their Lovely Names, from Stepping Stones Press.  His poems have appeared or are forthcoming in Shenandoah, Southeast Review, South Dakota Review, Free Lunch, and elsewhere.