This Listening

Why is it so difficult,
listening, being there,
without a shred of advice?
Dogs do it so easily. Can I
ever get past answers and be able to give
the utter comfort of dumb love?
Oh for a dog’s attentive ears,
always at the ready.

When I get out of my way,
and arrive at no agenda
I can become a giant ear
that swivels like a dish to hear
your words, every feeling they hide or say,
and the resonance of questions
behind the messages—
your questions to yourself,
never really to the listener.

But when I fail to listen,
and cause to suffer someone I love,
my behavior humbles me, reveals
layers of pride and fear
that must be lifted before I can listen
like an animal companion who hears
your nuances of tone, and the tender
echoing membranes of your soul.

Let me unblock my receivers
let me unstop
the flow of love,
for is listening not
simply that? I resolve,
once more, to practice
this so difficult,
so simple thing–
this listening.

©Susa Silvermarie 2019

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