Among three pups only one has no fur pelt.
Warmed by wriggling sister and brother
she sucks at milk and suffers bitch-licks
writhes in snarling rough-tumble play
before the real fights begin over rat and cat.
Blood smears her pink jaws.
Through a sleeping city she prowls with her mother
hunting prey until the night she’s caught
in a flail of dirty limbs, a big moth net.
At the no-scent plastic institution
they do their best to make her human.
She’s washed and dressed, taught to walk upright
to clip the sounds of people-speech
forget her bark and growl. Forget.
They give her a name and she likes to say it.
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