The house full of life other than human life,
first and foremost bubbling up in the small black dog
gamboling around the yard, the cloth doormat
clenched firmly in his gray mouth, and then
the rabbit in his cage, fat and bunchy,
poking a pink nose through the bars
when someone approaches with a handful of leaves.
The turtle in the sunlight, large as a dinner plate.
The fish, placid in their murmuring tank,
awaiting the day they can float, belly-up,
to the gleaming surface of the water.
My youngest sister, cooing over the dog
in a language that passes between only them,
her hands deep in his fur, his four paws in the air
as testament to a pure and gleeful love,
all bodies warm and bristling with the weight
of it and the heat of it, love and the animals;
we are surrounded by it.

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