Spring 2018

Photo of Rosie

Ode to Rosie

by David and Nicole Braden-Johnson

Photograph Credit: Rosie, David and Nicole Braden-Johnson

Ode to Rosie

Perked ears attuned to every word and action
Raise questions of the depth of knowing, when
One phrase is met with eager-eyed attention
While others vex or reach beyond her ken.
No greater joy or resolve than giving chase
With a victorious howl and rhapsodic whine
To scare a skunk or deer or bear from her space
Although the end of these acts she deigns not design.
Content for now to be the main recipient
Of all our childless love and focused care,
With the arrival of a rival immanent
She may choose either to befriend or despair.
Just as fledglings grow and leave the tree,
Our loyal Rosie remains in memory.


David K. Braden-Johnson is an avocational jazz pianist and professor of philosophy at MCLA. He has co-authored two books and published a bit of poetry, fiction, and numerous philosophical essays. He lives in Conway, MA with his wife, Nicole, and, as of this writing, their 5-week-old son, Kenneth.

Nicole K. Braden-Johnson has published poems in The Write Launch, Spires, and maintains a monthly poetry column in The Visitor. She is an alumna of MCLA with an M.A. in English from Westfield State University. Currently working for the Amherst Regional School District, Nicole lives in Conway, MA with her husband, David, their newborn son, Kenneth, and numerous companion animals.