The other day at the Court House he barked
as the flames blistered his snout.
Sniffed the ones lined up and transferred
to the blind house on the corner,
where he’d often wag his tail
in military marches.
It’s Friday, old Lázaro the street dog
goes into a restaurant and is arrested,
a criminal record was the last thing he’d want
it would prove even more he was a man.
Now they all keep an eye on him, point him out,
issue warnings, possible convictions
he feels for his tail
and his two paws left behind like fingerprints.
cries, needs a hug.
Cries, signs, looks for a handkerchief,
signs, cries, asks for a kiss.
The man at his side
growls like he did before.
Lázaro just cries and signs.
The little dog with smoke in her eyes
rummages on the other side of the bars.
Outside they read off the lists, Lázaro isn’t there.
Translated by Olivia Lott