Bell

the dog with large, obvious
balls is out again. his balls
don’t drag on the ground or
anything, but he supports them
gingerly, bow-legged, as if
he were smuggling a bell
i watch him move between
want and want – other dogs, the
roasted corn smell of houses
being built, exercisers –
he is in my neighbor’s yard
when a Code Compliance truck
comes rolling by
someone has called in outrage
about the dog
his balls are so obvious.
they fear he will rape their animals
attack their children
i turn to my own dog
he is no longer sleeping
something like a distant bell
has woken him
he stands in the hallway
quietly, staring at the door

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