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Dead Skunk Logo: round logo of a white skunk silhouette on a black background with the words “Dead Skunk” in cursive. “Dead” is neon purple and “Skunk” is neon yellow.


Lorraine Henrie Lins

My first dog wasn’t mine

but for a week; a baby Shepard

in wolf-grey fur and pink foot pads

who’d followed me in from the snow one day—

he waited on the stoop for as long

as it took me to steal him some bread-heels

and a handful of the Milkbones we kept

in the tall red box under the sink.

No. I couldn’t have him. No, I didn’t know

where he’d come from. No, he wasn’t friendly.

No, he could bite. No, that’s just how dogs are.

No, he’ll just get attached. No, we already

have a dog. No. We had our dog first. No.

My sister’s boyfriend took him to a farm

where there was a grassy hill in a big, wide

yard with a white, white fence and a warm

kitchen floor with a rug and a fireplace

and a clean, white bowl of fresh water,

two cats named something catchy

and a boy who would love him forever.

Author Bio: Lorraine Henrie Lins serves as the Director of New and Emerging Poets with Tekpoet and is a founding member of the “No River Twice” poetry performance troupe. She is the author of five books of poetry, including the forthcoming Without the Water. Lins’ work appears in a wide variety of familiar publications and collections, as well as a small graffiti poster in New Zealand. For more information, please visit:

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