By Dara-Lyn Shrager
Translucent that delicate flesh,
blue-collared brindle on stilts,
spirals of breath doubling out
his snout into this wintry mix
of fever and fear. Pink flap
where a second ear should be.
Half of every sound dead
to him, squirrel-scratch and fish-flip
and somebody far away
calling his name. Half the news
we mute, the other half we cannot
stop repeating. How we long
to be warm, taken somewhere
by loving hands and stroked to sleep.
Dara-Lyn Shrager is the co-founder and editor of Radar Poetry. Her full-length manuscript Whiskey, X-Ray, Yankee was published by Barrow Street Press in 2018, after being named a finalist for the Barrow Street Poetry Prize. Dara-Lyn holds an MFA from Bennington College and a BA from Smith College. Her poems appear or are forthcoming in many journals, including Crab Creek Review, River Heron Review, Barn Owl Review, The Greensboro Review, Nashville Review, Passages North, Salamander, Southern Humanities Review, Thrush Poetry Journal, Tinderbox Poetry Journal and Yemassee. Her articles have appeared in newspapers and magazines including The New York Times, The Philadelphia Inquirer, Philadelphia Magazine and others.