June 2024 - To Navigate the Chaos

Banner for Dog Throat, 2024.06
Photo by Victor D Sandiego

Welcome to the June 2024 issue of Dog Throat Journal. This is our third issue (thank you everybody!), and we've been fortunate to receive a beautiful collection of work from around the world. This issue includes work from: Brad Rose, Claudia M. Stanek, Cyn Kitchen, Glen Armstrong, Jeff Burt, John C. Mannone, Ken Poyner, Mercedes Lawry, Patricia Hope, Peter Cashorali, Robin Shepard, Sarah Rohrs, and Trilety Wade.

I'm very grateful to everyone who has entrusted us with their work. Your support means a lot. Many thanks!

Issue title by Mercedes Lawry


by Peter Cashorali

After a while, colors noticed me and came forward. The green of a cypress tree was first. It was an intentionally dull green, dull as a parking lot on a hot day, yet as I didn’t look away it smiled its approval and opening its doors invited me down stairways, where in spite of the darkness there were many interesting things laid out on tables. In the throat of an iris was a sticky rich yellow, the disgust a man feels when he does something that makes him sick, and he knows he won’t stop....

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by Sarah Rohrs

I find the broken piece of mirror in the bathroom and press the point into my palm, drawing the blood. They think we hide. But they don’t know we never refuse the brew and the curse. Those of us with the thick thighs and ripe mouths at the full moon. Didn’t they notice the smoke after the long white dress ignited in the store window? This time, the last call is ricocheting off the green velvet table. They’ll remember this after this night. I take the end of the candle out of my purse...

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by Claudia M. Stanek

The outbuilding stands at the edge of the way-back, in front of the pines the breeze directs to sing in unison. Its pale grey exterior blinds when the sun escapes cotton ball clouds the lake fills the sky with in the heating afternoon. Its walls, like a torso holding life tight, don’t buckle when the rumbling begins. The hens within its care flutter and squawk off their nests until the ground settles and the structure rests secure on the cinder blocks...

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A Taste of My Own Medicine

by Brad Rose

The whereabouts of my body remains unknown, but I don’t take it personally. In fact, of all the criminal cephalopods, I’m told octopuses are the best. I mean, they’re only babies, but who’s to know if they’re disgruntled or merely handy with a pipe wrench? All information is suspect....

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A bird in the hand is just as much meat as proverb

by Trilety Wade

The endurance of backyard barbecues. Another rough rub at her patience. Wild was not allowed here, a truth verified by lawns of pristine artifice, and pubic hair trimmed to the skin. But the nature of hair was an assumption because, of course, she’d never seen her neighbors naked, and come to think of it, wouldn’t it be the non-wild ones who shunned their own touch only to let their lowers grow lush, or would it be the other way around where the non-wild ones tamed their hair and eschewed their own curly luxuriance?

The grill sizzled and hissed as we traded stories of our youth....

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In An Attempt to Navigate the Chaos

by Mercedes Lawry

There was no regulation and so I went full abandon. The sky opened like a flower. I rose and fell, developed wings and went through a gentle rain like flour through a sieve. It was October, then January, then late March, I don’t know how. Time was an old-fashioned game with missing pieces. I preferred this, whatever it was, even if it was nothing. All so rich, so detailed. I had left...

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Ask the Trees

by Glen Armstrong

I flip a quarter, and George Washington dares to tell me repeatedly that the days are getting shorter. I do not trust him. There are no depictions of him crying.

My Venus flytrap mocks my fascination with wooden teeth. That which is plant-based can be as cruel as that which bleeds. Ask the trees. Ask the rope...

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by Jeff Burt

I lacked an exhaling force, lungs encouraged to close by a constant infection. Lungs starved for oxygen, a harmonica suggested by my uncle, became my companion. I lay in my bed, I lay on the couch, I lay on the floor, I lay dying on the dying grass, playing my new harmonica, driving my parents mad. I played a single tune, a wavering long sound like a train approaching, approached, and then whistling away, or maybe it wasn’t a tune, or a train, maybe it was a noisy wind caught in the aluminum roof of the shed, or the way a wind came to a roar and then diminished as it flapped...

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Work of Art

by Patricia Hope

Stone is not flesh and bone, but can it portray emotion? Even the artist’s devotion to the notion of capturing perfection is the erection of impossibility. Often a hint of beauty is carved, painted, or captured in a writer's words. Sometimes, a sculptor can attain the curves and valleys of a woman’s body, the plain skin covering her belly and hips, the hardness of thighs topping long legs that can stride through life bending to all its purposes....

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What Shall I Do With My Hands?

by Robin Shepard

What shall I do with my hands? Let them hang limp at my side. Fold them crosswise under my arms. Lift them lightly, waist high, palms upturned. Perhaps I’ll let them flutter like birds at the end of my fingers. If I were to give them freedom to choose, would they work for good or do harm? Would they close around the neck of a wounded dove, and would the killing be merciful or cruel? What words can I give my hands...

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by John C. Mannone

Friday rush hour is always dangerous for the unsuspecting // like gazelles grazing on Serengeti grass // oblivious to a crouching cheetah ready to lunge and claw and clamp the innocent by the throat // The mademoiselle in a Dearborn-gray Ford does everything right // even with an extra measure of caution that heavy traffic always demands // She doesn’t see the impatient buff-colored box truck, spotted // with oil and road soot...

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Table of Contents

by Cyn Kitchen

Morning sun. Stinging blue. Slathered over the plowed field, waiting. Smells like fingertips after rain folding in sheets of collapse untethered from the sky. Sparkles perched on dew-tipped grass, each blade a story, an interruption. Masquerades as a bird crashing through undergrowth in search of spoil. That biblical sense of impending arrival that never comes, has already come....

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Just In Time

by Ken Poyner

With our orchestra broken, there is little in town to entertain us. Work, food, sex, and television can become statistically unspectacular. Without the orchestra, our citizens simply drone on. Then someone notices that porch lights of late have been burning out more often than before. Through constant observation, we tie Linda to these appliance failures. No...

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