Megan Baldrige | 3 poems

Just In Case 

In case I don’t survive the Trump years,
tell Barak and Michelle, 
and the POTUS dogs Bo and Sunny
that I loved them, very much.

In case I lose consciousness
on Inauguration day,
don’t revive me until 2020.
Then, don’t share 
anything that happened.
Should Hillary, Mario or Ted
run again,
minimally hydrate me,
respect my wish to be a 
longterm amnesiac,
leave me attached to tubes,
strapped down on a gurney,
comatose for four more years.

In case I cannot stomach
the bile bubbling through my veins,
in case my TrumpCare card
cannot cure my case of outrage,
you have my permission to 
fly me to any country 
with a thoughtful president.

In case I cannot stomach 
the gall,
my dear friends:
do not let me buy firearms
with no background check, 
over the internet,
from my crazy neighbor. 

Should you find me crazed,
clinging in my closet to tarnished truths,
remove my television and radio,
let me wander my neighborhood,
with a rechargeable-battery-run flashlight,
telling my truths, 
uttering words  like “unprecedented”
just as a real newscaster does.

And tell me 
when the four years 
is up.

Remember Francisco Coronado

Remember when your parents
brought home a new baby
a mewing, mauling mystery,
so fussed over
as he turned into
your forever brother
who leveled
your Lego village
while you were at school.

And, remember when Coronado
rode into Alburqueruque
in 1540,
shiny and proud
riding a
never-before-seen horse,
he let you ride.
He wore a rooster helmet
topped with an iron mowhawk.

He showed up at dusk in October.
Under the armour, he was
Hoping to dine with you,
he eyed your turkey feather blanket
and your daughter
with interest.
you were hosting Coronado and
1000 of his men
for dinner.

The first snow was on the ground.
Soon your people moved from
your own pueblo
to please Coronado.
You were forced
to share your corn with him,
almost starved
that winter
so he wouldn’t

In April
when he left for Kansas
you said
‘Yep, there’s gold East of here.”
And then, sure enough,
Coronado returned
in October,
and complained about no gold
and no turkey feather blankets.
And he was hungry again.

And suddenly
you knew
you were going to be
stuck with that
little brother,

Remember Francisco Coronado was first published online 
in the Duke City Fix Sunday Poem Series July 3d, 2016

A Dry Dog Story

Poet Billy Collins
nobody likes
a wet dog.
Today, I yell back at Billy: 
“I love a wet dog!”

I love a wet dog,
devoted to hygiene,
dog paddling
In a clean stream
or taking a warm shower 

My dog refuses
to approach any 
body of water.
He’s all chicken at the hiss of hose,
not a dog you want
representing at the fire station.

This dusty dog dropped out
of the grooming program at Petsmart
after I dropped him off 
for a spring cleaning.
His first, also last, personal groomer
called my phone to rat him out.

She insisted I return 
to pick up a dry, dirty dog,
turned surly 
at the shampoo station,
now glowering at cleaner dogs.

Years later,
his coat is matted ombre,
black merging to brown
where he lies on the ground,
with a few detached sticks
the backyard cottonwood offered him.

Like Pigpen in Peanuts,
he is clothed in his own dust storm,
dust that he, and he alone, treasures. 
Sometimes, new just knocks off old dust;
he likes to dump a load in the kitchen,
when I’m cooking.

Refusing to reveal
his reasons for staying dry,
he is a dog of mystery:
Perhaps, his parents hail from
small towns in New Mexico,
Carrizozo or Claunch.

His mom took him for memorable walks
in xeriscaped dylands.
His pa overly cautioned him 
about not swimming in arroyos,
and overdid 
the lecture about conserving water.


Megan is a retired teacher who taught students ranging from second grade to twenty-to-thirty-year-old students recommitting to school so they could pass their GED. She also spent a lot of time trying to get her own four children through school. She has lived for twenty years in Cedar Crest, then for the past ten years in Albuquerque. She is happily transplanted Connecticutian. She loves a beautiful garden, and cooking a good meal at night, and, now that she has retired, she loves to read late! As a volunteer, she is a docent at Albuquerque fabulous Botanic Garden, at the Albuquerque Museum and at the National Hispanic Cultural Center.

She hopes four years is going to go by quickly, and is planning to raise her political voice.

3 thoughts on “Megan Baldrige | 3 poems

  1. I enjoyed your poetry. It will be hard to wait out the term of the maniac, won’t it. On the subject of wet dogs. Maybe our reaction to dog-smell is a carefully planned reminder that in this world nothing is perfect. In a novel Joe Lansdowne writes that heaven is where every dog you have loved runs to meet you. Thanks for your poems.


  2. thanks for the conversational thoughts, David. I often write for myself, so it’s fun to hear reactions. I think dogs are a reminder of perfectly imperfection.



    Perfectly coiffed, thin, mustard, ski-jump hair
    perfectly pursed lips and gleaming feral
    teeth: your non politically-correct
    notes, breaths, perfectly pitched riffs
    in the jam of our uncivil discourse.

    Trumpet of God, you evoke
    passion from the mob: “You’re Fired!”
    in the slaughter, the burning, of sinners
    primed for the flames, you blow
    like Gabriel, the winds of rage.

    Trumpet of God, we embrace you
    Satchmo to our angry, wailing
    toothless, stretched old mouths
    media spewing in the face of hope.

    Prophet, blow the loud jeremiad in
    the desert of our desiccant hearts.

    Trumpet of God.
    Oh, how we all, every one,
    on your right
    on your left
    deserves to be
    in your small hands.


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