ritual for wild dogs

ritual for wild dogs

by Jeremy Gaulke

we found whiskey in bottles
without labels
in charred ruins and secret places
draped in rust and toadstools

filled hub caps and jagged cans
and left near the shit and uneaten cowls
of the dogs who ran the woods
at night

we left the whiskey
to madden the dogs
the way that men are mad
to make them brave enough
to return to us

to forget the bags and boxes
after their mothers
to forget the fall
the way they broke against
each other in the dark
to forget that they were so hungry
that they had funerals
thru their intestines
eating as much as they could from the
soft jowl and haunch and sides

to give them the strength to be ghosts
to be gods

we knew they were there but could never see them
but we prayed for them
and left the whiskey
in the ruins off the road
adorned in rust and natures squalor
to make them mad
to make them strong
to make new gods of slaughter

Jeremy Gaulke is the author of The Ghost of Harrison Sheets, access to a description and excerpts from which are available here, as well as a chance to buy it. “ritual for wild dogs” is from a forthcoming volume from The Temple Inc. entitled What the Master Does Not Speak Of.

Categories: POETRY | Tags: , , , , | Leave a comment

About Jay Babcock

I am an independent writer and editor based in Tucson, Arizona. In 2022: I publish a weeklyish email newsletter called LANDLINE = https://jaybabcock.substack.com Previously: I co-founded and edited Arthur Magazine (2002-2008, 2012-13) and curated the three Arthur music festival events (Arthurfest, ArthurBall, and Arthur Nights) (2005-6). Prior to that I was a district office staffer for Congressman Henry A. Waxman, a DJ at Silver Lake pirate radio station KBLT, a copy editor at Larry Flynt Publications, an editor at Mean magazine, and a freelance journalist contributing work to LAWeekly, Mojo, Los Angeles Times, Washington Post, Vibe, Rap Pages, Grand Royal and many other print and online outlets. An extended piece I wrote on Fela Kuti was selected for the Da Capo Best Music Writing 2000 anthology. In 2006, I was somehow listed in the Music section of Los Angeles Magazine's annual "Power" issue. In 2007-8, I produced a blog called "Nature Trumps," about the L.A. River. From 2010 to 2021, I lived in rural wilderness in Joshua Tree, Ca., where I practiced with Buddhist teacher Ruth Denison and was involved in various pro-ecology and social justice activist activities.

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