POETRY: Sheri Vandermolen – Brown Dog

Brown Dog


Brown Dog sleeps in a trash heap

beside the Bière Club,

awaiting exiting patrons,

barley-hopping to Friday night’s next stop,

who might spare her a handful of chicken bones,

a scrap of leftover pork fat.


Unable to snub the small dab

of creamed spinach and mashed potatoes

she spies on the broken-slabbed sidewalk,

she consumes the gray-flavored calories

that will sustain her night’s prowl.


She watches with maternal fret

as her small companion

dares to dart, despite bum back leg,

across the beehive-alive side road,

avoiding auto-rickshaws and motorbikes

buzzing through their corner

of the pocked urban sprawl.


An agile navigator, she joins him.

They give a few quick sniffs,

then trot into fractionated night,

where they’ll blend into the blurred scurry

of Bangalore’s nine million people

and three hundred thousand other street dogs —

a population gone astray.


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