A Doggo and His Ball

Poem and Palinode

Franco, a little doggy I care for several days a week.

I have been writing some short stories lately, and though I am late for National Poetry Month, have been in the mood over the past few days to experiment with different poetry forms. I am always in the middle of a longer creative writing project, so it has been nice to write some shorter pieces and put out a piece of creative writing more often.

I came across this challenge by DVerse to write a palinode. As described on their page, “A palinode or palinody is an ode or song that retracts or recants a view or sentiment to what the poet wrote in a previous poem.” It’s possible to do the poem and its recanting in a two-part poem which is what I chose to do.

A Doggo and His Ball


Franco is a funny boy,

Doggo with a favorite toy.

Balls are this doggo’s delight,

Which he dreams of day and night.

His fixation is annoying,

For the while he is enjoying,

the ball it bounces, skips and places

self into inconvenient spaces.

Only a hooman on her knees,

Face, hands or belly can retrieve

beloved bally from its snares

Under sofas, seats, beds or chairs.


Did I say my darling was a pest,

Just because he gives me little rest?

Maybe I did, but only in jest.

© 2021 Susan Joy Clark

I’m not sure my form is flawless — poem people, be gentle — but maybe light, comic verse gives me more leeway?

I’m showing off my lovely mismatched staying-at-home outfit in this pic, but it’s a good example of Franco being a darling.

This silly ditty below, by Gelett Burgess in 1895, was shared on DVerse’s page as an example of a poem with palinode, and I liked it so much I’ll share it here.

“I never saw a purple cow.
I never hope to see one.
But I can tell you anyhow
I’d rather see than be one.”

Later in life, Burgess wrote —

“Ah yes, I wrote the purple cow!
I’m sorry now I wrote it!
But I can tell you anyhow,
I’ll kill you if you quote it!”

15 thoughts on “A Doggo and His Ball

    1. Thank you so much for that encouragement. As you can read, I was not that confident. I’ve had more practice with prose than poetry. 🙂

    1. Yes, he is very lovable and loving. It is very rewarding taking care of him in spite of some “pestiness.” 🙂

    1. It is sometimes annoying to get the ball repeatedly, because it gets under the furniture so often, (sometimes immediately after rescuing it) and he is so unhappy to lose his ball. He is also a delight, very sweet and affectionate. Thanks for reading and commenting. 🙂

    1. True. 🙂 He is a handsome dog, but he isn’t mine. I take care of him several days a week and have cared for him since he was a small puppy. I think Franco feels I’m part of his extended family, maybe an “aunt.” Thank you for your nice comment. 🙂

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