One Christmas, Sick Dog

leafless, stick trees
ornamented by squirrels
skinny squirrels chewing
on their thumbs

& families eating breakfast
in the lobbies of vet clinics
on Christmas, all of them
present

but the mother who toils at home
with the bleaching. the garage pallet
the chew toys

the thinking of things once had
in a mouth. one of them starts to cry
they all cry

there are children and dogs
in the clinic crying. this is the sound
I’ll be. a sound that sounds like
distance dropped of snow

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