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The small splash domes a force field,

splits a rift, the wild dogs on one side


& us on the other.  The moat is tiny,

but efficacious.  Attackers can lay siege,


but we will toast them.  They will not starve

us out.  The slow burn strips graffiti


from the day, reveals the bricks still holding,

lifts us above disappointment like a mother


raccoon, dragging us high to the secure crotch

of an oak, trouble upstaring, reduced & clawless.


Tilting yields a blessing, transubstantiates

sawdust into blood, raises the dead.  Sipping, I


say a prayer, thankful I have reached this

place, the harbor of this bottle, tilting.

Devon Balwit is a poet and educator working in Portland, OR. Every morning, she uses the height of her dog's leaps as an oracle to gauge her fortunes for the day, then writes and writes and writes--hoping to produce a thing of beauty. Her work has found many homes, among them: The New Verse News, The Journal of Applied Poetics, Anti-Heroin Chic, The Fem, Dying Dahlia Review, Red Paint Hill, and Vanilla Sex Magazine.

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