Help me find a poem - late 80s edition
May 6, 2020 8:02 PM   Subscribe

When I was in 7th grade we had to memorize and recite a poem. This would have been around 1988 or 1989. I remember a few things about it, but I can't remember it now. I think the title was "Suburbia" or something similar I think the author was "John Cianci" - I feel good about the last name, not sure on the first

The subject was, a guy's neighbor confronts him and says his dog has been pooping in her flower bed. He protests a bit but finally decides not to fight about it, carries it back, and uses it as fertilizer in his lawn. I kinda almost remember a few lines

It ends like "I bore the turd across the line..." referring to him returning the poop to his soil.

When he's wondering whether it was definitely his dog he asks himself whether she "thought to check for a rectal ID"

I'd really like to find this poem again. I got a smirk and a mild rebuke from my teacher at the time for selecting this poem. I thought it was a dumb exercise at the time, but here I am, I feel like I half remember much of it, 30 years later.
posted by RustyBrooks to Media & Arts (3 answers total)
Suburban Poem, John Ciardi

Yesterday Mrs. Friar phoned. 'Mr. Ciardi,
how do you do?' she said. 'I am sorry to say this isn't exactly a social call. The fact is your dog has just deposited -forgive me-
a large repulsive object in my petunias.'

I thought to ask, 'Have you checked the rectal grooving for a positive I.D.?'...
posted by Flannery Culp at 8:21 PM on May 6 [3 favorites]

Yes, this is exactly it! I don't know why I insisted it was Cianci!

Thank you so much
posted by RustyBrooks at 8:34 PM on May 6

Reading it, I wonder, did I understand the bit about his son and the fishing trip? I think the answer is no.
posted by RustyBrooks at 8:38 PM on May 6 [2 favorites]

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