Bitch as Sheepdog
Before shearing the sheepfold 
sleeps and the singular dodgy eyes 
 
dart like wolfish hands
under a blanket. This 
 
marriage bed. Once I lost another
dog. Once I lost them both.
 
At night I think of anyone 
but him. I begin to notice
 
how he hates my questions. 
I move to feed the animals.
 
The little one licks the bowl.
The bigger one squeezes me
 
around the ribs until I cannot
breathe. And the wolf—
 
I catch him staring 
when I am quiet—
 
as if he’d unstitch my skin, too,
and open my head, hardwire
 
my brain into submission.
Even after he kills me, 
 
he puts his ear to the coarse 
pastoral of my shame. Trembly 
 
voice. The pelts at his feet.
By his works he should be known.
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