I carry nothing but my plastic grocery bag
Containing the last of my Verreniki that I was given
From a babushka on the side of the only narrow street of Lyviv.
There is no home destination in front of me
But still I proceed across the dusty gravel road before me
With the remaining strip of sole left under me.
The other side of the gravel road yields an eternity of tiny lonely rubber heads
That remind me of the pasture of goldenrod that I spent last night in
Except there is no golden color reflecting the sun
And there is no trace of grass for me to rest my head upon.
Still I allow the remaining strip of sole to hit the ground as I walk.
I am not searching for a home, I do not think.
My mind is filled to the gills with wondering about what to do when my food runs out.
The ground is dry and dusty
Ruling out the possibility of a source of water nearby.
Still I continue this walk until I hear a snap of a twig.
I pause and nothing seems out of place amongst the hundreds of rubber heads
Yet there is a group of powdered dust that has lifted into the air
Just a short distance in front of me.
First the coal black nose,
Then the crystal brown eyes
Followed by the pointed ears that lead a brown speckled body and tail towards me
And out of the dust bowl his paws have created.
He bounds for me and I crouch down to one knee to receive him.
His cold nose nudges my hand
And I respond with the first smile I have produced since I lost the sense of belonging I once had.
My hand buries itself in his thick fur
And I cannot help but offer this dog
A home in my heart.
I stand up and keeping the eyes on my new companion,
Begin walking again
Realizing that I finally have something to call home.