[poem] The Job of My Dog’s Paws

My dog is old now–soon to be eleven.  Here’s a little poem dedicated to her.  I so wish she could read this!

The Job of My Dog’s Paws

by Nayoung Jin

When the sun shines through the window, 

the first job is my morning call.

Her paws pressing on my chest

till her dream comes true

the dream of trampling wildflowers,

rolling in the wet grass.

The second job of her paws is sticking    

to my mom’s hand-made cushion

dyed by ripe persimmons.

When my hand tries to push the paws aside,

they never move an inch

feeling the fluffy cotton

like hands resting on Her Majesty’s chair.

The third job is ripping the cotton out of a rag rabbit,

making a hole in the center

like scooping up whipped egg white in a bowl

or like digging up white clouds in the sky

till every cloud loses its flesh

leaving blue scars.

The fourth job:

entertaining herself in the kitchen,

scattering a mound of broccoli, a row of carrot slices

chasing and sliding

striking

like catching a fly just landed on the floor.

The paws then move to the next job:

scratching the bottom of the frying pan

until the spaghetti is all gone.

Their secret job must be finished

before I am done talking on the phone.

The final job

is to drag her belly silently, slowly, sneakily,

leaving behind only the smell of herbs and fried garlic  

until she arrives beneath the desk

under the shadow

where everything feels safe.

Thank you for reading! 🙂 Be safe, be happy! Take care!

[comic] Carrot Trouble by Nayoung Jin

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Note for readers

Carrot Trouble By Nayoung Jin

Where the story comes from:

Why carrot picking? I’m from Jeju island, South Korea. In my hometown, just after the carrot harvest is over, there will be some carrots lying in the fields, which are free, and so a few people—some local women, travellers, or sometimes nuns—come and pick them up from the ground. Watching this is my favorite memory.

Why carrots/carrot farmer? I spent one summer taking care of carrots at UBC Geogarden, looking at them almost every day. And when I harvested the carrots I grew, I felt great joy and felt truly rich.

Why rabbit god? You might remember “bird god” comic I created this term and me explaining how it came to be. This time it’s rabbit god, which is as fun to have. For a long time in my childhood, I believed that special rabbits lived in the Moon. So, it felt natural to create rabbit god who watches over dear rabbits living on Earth.

I also thought a lot about the two: 1) wild rabbits I saw and loved while taking a walk on the Kitsilano beach. 2) my baby cousin who eagerly climbed onto the dinning table and ate everything he saw, using his mouth. So, of course, our lunch was postponed.

Intention:

What is it about: Mama rabbit and a witch fight over a carrot.

Target audience: Kids

What it explores: the concept of motherly love and need. The mama rabbit embodies that. This comic is a tribute to all the loving, caring mothers who have kids to feed and have to be brave, every day, for their kids.

Thanks for reading! 🙂

Nayoung