Stray dogs are ripping widowed paper bags.
Nearby lies a broken heel; a leg out of place;
a skirt, hem slung around; a mouth that sags:
a hole in a yellow, faded, made-up face.
A mongrel tears a strip of rawhide free
from a faded bag. His teeth sink in the soft skin
as bitter drops fall from the balcony
where a girl is wringing out her clothes again.
His ears twitch, hit with the brown sinkwater
that pours from dirty panties. He turns his tongue
to lap the steady stream. The girl drops her
wet rags, coughing. He gnaws at the blood and dung.
The mongrel drops his skin in the filthy light.
Her love is coming home to stay tonight.
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