Night DogsbyThe Mutt©
There are secrets in the streets
known only to the damned;
they’re whispered in the ears of cats,
dispatched into the stealthy night.
They’re glimpsed around crack corners,
they thump in empty dumpsters,
they rouse the night dogs from their torpor,
lolling under mercury vapor halos,
longing for a soft rain to fall
like an angel’s hand.
Peregrines haunt the glass-eyed canyons,
hunting asphalt streams,
while the ghosts of screaming trees
crack concrete with their wailing,
the moon, aloof,
withholds extorted light,
and dark matters strangle love’s umbilical
and suck the breath of babes.
But there are alibis in rat’s eyes,
black as a junkie’s scabs,
dark with foreknowledge, relentless as grass,
they race ahead of the grinding apocalypse
that singed the hair from their tails
and sent them squealing down blind alleys
into the heat’s embrace.
And the traffic lights turn yellow
and the pay phones drop their dimes
and the stool pigeons sing on hot car stereos,
ratting out the night dogs,
who spill their guts under taxi tires
while the whispering cats lie still.
Still, the city keeps its council
and the hookers bite their tongues,
and clandestine lovers seal their lips
with kisses swiped at knifepoint,
and the night dogs,
sheathed in desperate grime,
grit their broken teeth,
and worry the cat
that smelled a rat,
and take their cover stories to the grave.