I miss your low drone,

your no-nonsense, business-like growl

Ready to pounce on quarry under the couch

or stick your slanted mouth in to seize

prey huddling in their crevices,

the web they weave in high places.


A wedding gift that the marriage outlasted

you soon lost your breath.

Age takes its toll, the game less tempting,

you coughed and sputtered in protest,

wheels dragging.


You even shocked us once --

and we finally got the message

you had swelled up and emptied

once too often, maybe.


The world has gone bagless since.

Robots scour your hunting grounds now,

solo and unmanned, ignoring corners,

getting snagged on rugs,

infuriating cats


In the end, consistency matters

That steady routine every weekend

when we worked in tandem as a team

to rid our tiny world of our tiny mess.


Your box sits empty in the storeroom.

The snap of your power-cord no more,

your efficient hum a distant echo

leaving a vacuum in our hearts

that no other sucker

will ever fill.