Citizen Canines

Poetry
Travel

Citizen Canines

The only way to marry a city is draping yourself in its legend.
There I was, a flea eclipsed by a merriment of dogs,

like a peddler clutching his flock of balloon tails
at a carnival. We’d commandeer sidewalks, a ship

full of misfits sailing Upper West currents under
pantomime vigils of shiny-toed doormen.

Prozac purebreds never deigned beg for pats;
blood too blue for fawning. I was happiest

amongst the citizen canines of rescued lore;
bastards and fleabags. Like a gang of New York,

we found the city’s secrets and left our mark
on fire hydrants and hearts — harassing old flashers

adorned in trench coats and fedoras like yesteryear
spies; holding court with ballerinas trading pointe shoes

for tattoos; and drowning out loneliness by howling out
music across parks bathed in echoes of Dylan and Ginsberg.

©Melita Masters

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