As part of its Poetry Corner series, the Library hosted a group of thirty last week for poetry readings by students and faculty along the theme of “furry friends.” Participants read aloud from poems they admired or had written themselves, with some composed on the fly during the session itself. Participants especially enjoyed Mary Oliver’s poems from the book Dog Songs and a Library display including pet-related artwork created by our main creative talent, our amazing student assistants. Some students attended as part of an assignment to review a literary event. 

Following the readings, students shared heartfelt stories of loss and love around their own furry friends, past and present, noting how much we depended on them during Covid especially.

From the many poems read aloud, three original poems are shared here for your enjoyment. 

An Ode to Dogs in the Media, by Justin De Guzman, Skyline College student

Throughout the generations

Through screen and speech and page

The media is filled with dogs

Of every shape and age

I took some time to write an ode

To name some D-O-Gs

No matter how much fame they have

Or how niche they may be

To Snoopy and his antics

To Odie and his smile

To Great Dane Scooby Doo

And his iconic laughing style

To Clifford and his epic size

To Martha and her words

To that dog in Duck Hunt

That laughs when you miss birds

To one-oh-one dalmatians

To Lady and the Tramp

To all the dogs in Minecraft

That shake when they get damp

To Marmaduke, a big boy 

To Pluto, Goofy too

To my man K.K. Slider

Who’ll sing his songs for you

To Blue and her skadoo-ing

To Bluey and her friends

To Huckleberry Hound

In his cartoon from way back when

To Inugami Korone 

To Dug from Pixar’s “Up”

To both Air Bud and Marley

Those rambunctious movie pups

To Ruff Ruffman and Frankenweenie

To Snoop Dogg, technically

To all the dogs I didn’t mention

In this rhyming spree

Whatever you are featured in

No matter who you are

Just know that I will love you

Cause every dog’s a star

World Languages professor Luciana Castro shared her poem:

“The Love of Our Lives: Unexpected” 

Always a feisty joy for me

Pure, perky and persistent puppy

Ornament to my humble home

Love of our lives: unexpected

Listening to our voice is his trademark

Our Apollo is our anchor for love and sorrows.

Librarian Jessica Silver-Sharp shared a poem she’d written as well:

Union cats demand dinner!

it’s 5:07 and closed session is in overtime

tired members on zoom

watch the clock,

worrying about traffic

union cats are getting restless

dinner time is 5:00pm. sharp.

(it’s in the contract!)

purring, they politely begin their testimonials…

we provided you with support during covid”

we were your therapists,

adjusting our routines to fit yours,

sacrificing our independence!”


Cats: “Did they hear us?”

It’s 5:09

Time for action!

walk across keyboards,

swish tails in faces

reverse direction —


5:12. Escalate!

claws in the good rug – we don’t mess around

and why not? let’s make some noise!

meow, me-OWME-OWW!!!”


O-kay already!

“brb,” she texts her comrades…

“pet break!”

Victory @ 5:14


Thank you to event facilitators Librarian Pia Walawalkar and Professor Rob Williams and to all of our student and faculty participants who made “Ode to Furry Friends” a success! Additional thanks to Gabriela Nocito for the animal cookies that were much enjoyed. We look forward to having you back for more poetry in Fall 2023.

Article by Jessica Silver-Sharp | Photo by Jessica Silver-Sharp

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