The Temptation of Animals

Written for:  Poets United Midweek Motif~Temptation  (posted by Sumana)

“Desiring something wrong or unwise is Temptation.
But isn’t it something extremely interesting and delightful once in a while? And powerful? How do you deal with it? Do you give in? Don’t you?
What tempts you most and seduces you to sin?
Or how do you resist the temptation?”

“Knowing was a temptation. What you don’t know won’t tempt you.”— Margaret Atwood, The Handmaid’s Tale

Try to keep out of animal shelters
and television ads that shatter
my heart. I want to be a helper,
take them all home, but there are factors.

First and foremost, will my dogs like them,
will sleeping places become an issue,
or extra food, or health costs that when
added up, require a box of tissues.

But I know those eager pups are out there,
who knows what will make me give in.
A little face on display will dare
me, and no speech will deter my whim.

For now, I will be content with two.

About purplepeninportland

I am a freelance poet, born and bred in Brooklyn, New York. I live with my husband, John, and two charming rescue dogs–Marion Miller and Murphy. We spent eight lovely years in Portland, OR, but are now back in New York. My goal is to create and share poetry with others who write, or simply enjoy reading poetry. I hope to touch a nerve in you, and feel your sparks as well.
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14 Responses to The Temptation of Animals

  1. Oh I so know what you mean. I dare not even go to a shelter, as I am not allowed to have any pets at all, as a renter, and it is harder than you can imagine after a lifetime of having my own little trailers and yards and being able to do what I wanted. Sigh. I pat every dog I pass, and I walk a friend’s dog. But not living with one is hard. Even the photos on facebook KILL ME, so many dogs out there needing love. I think renters should be allowed to have pets. The pets need homes. And we need them. Enjoy your two. At least you have them.


    • Renters should definitely allow pets. It is pretty much the same here. My cousin who recently passed, could not have a dog in her new place, but kept treats and handed them out to all the dogs in the neighborhood. I wish you could have one.


  2. oldegg says:

    I keep well away from dog rescue homes, not that I could have a pet dog as I live in an apartment where they are not permitted. I have to indulge myself with visits to my daughters who both have dogs so I can indulge my dog bonding habit with theirs.


  3. Sumana Roy says:

    “A little face on display will dare / me, and no speech will deter my whim.” Lines touch so deeply.


  4. sanaarizvi says:

    Such a deeply touching poem, Sara ❤❤❤


  5. susanstoo says:

    Oh, yes! What a beautifully well-focused poem! I love ” box of tissues” and the entire desire to be a helper that makes the ads, etc, such dangerous temptations.


  6. gillena cox says:

    I grew up with dogs as pets in our house. As an adult i never looked to pets. But how well i understand the sympathy of your persona in this poem



  7. I’m right with you. If I could, I would take every single furry orphan home. So, I avoid shelters and pounds. I know that if I see them, I won’t be able to resist. And regardless of how much we want to help, no one can help all of them.


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