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Jane Kenyon - Biscuit

The dog has cleaned his bowl
and his reward is a biscuit,
which I put in his mouth
like a priest offering the host.

I can't bear that trusting face!
He asks for bread, expects
bread, and I in my power
might have given him a stone.

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Added: Feb 20 2003 | Viewed: 5273 times | Comments and analysis of Biscuit by Jane Kenyon Comments (1)

Biscuit - Comments and Information

Poet: Jane Kenyon
Poem: Biscuit
Volume: Otherwise: New and Selected Poems
Year: Published/Written in 1996
Poem of the Day: Nov 4 2005

Comment 1 of 1, added on April 1st, 2009 at 4:53 PM.

I tend to like Jane Kenyon's
poetry, but "Biscuit" always
makes me wonder if she has ever
lived with a dog.

If I re-wrote the poem to be more
realistic:

Biscuit

The dog has cleaned his bowl
but he still wants a biscuit.

I can't resist that cute face!
He asks for bread, expects
bread, and I am
powerless to resist.

But being an impish companion,
I offer him a stone.

He sniffs it, wondering what
my hand would taste like,
then looks up,
still wanting a biscuit.

. . .

It would loose its strength.
You could even say it would
become prosaic. :)

What's with this rewarding
a dog for eating?? That's like
rewarding a thief for stealing,
or a cat for sleeping (or leaping).
The metaphor doesn't really hold
up either. It's just another
example of human hubris. Sure,
the dog thinks the biscuit is
an offering; but in the sense
that I'm the worshiper and he's
the god. No, wait, that would be
cats. :) My dog just thinks I'm
a good pack-member for sharing
food (as I'm supposed to).
The trust involved is from me.
I am offering him food with my
hand which, to him, is even
better food. But he's a good
pack-member as well,
and he doesn't eat it.

Ray (wordbiscuit.com)

Ray Heinrich from United States

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