Especially in winter

everyone knows coyotes

are tempted by lapdogs – on leash or off –

as much as by rabbits or mice.

Their wild eyes glow white like stars

in their dark dens. No coyote pup grows up

with Grandma’s yarn Shih Tzu gracing

its duvet.  Or stays cute all its doggy years.

Better make yourself Big. Wave

your arms. Pretend to be wild

to protect little Gizmo who must

pretend to be human for you.

Paula Reed Nancarrow

Paula Reed Nancarrow is a Best of the Net- and Pushcart Prize-nominated poet and winner of the Winter 2020 Sixfold Poetry Prize. Print publications include Sixfold, Artemis and Whistling Shade, with work forthcoming in Permafrost, Paterson Literary Review, The Avalon Literary Review, and Night Picnic. Find links to poems available online at

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