Lost Dog – Amanda Joy

Write firemarked. Their cries hackle
my hair, red tails breaking up with the sky
inscribe the blotched light with warning
I’m too heat glutted to heed

Trouble is burrowing, ground chinked
with roo bones, fibula broken by land
rabbit pocked and warrened. Two monitor
lizards thread each eye in the slope

A helicopter siphons a dark line
of lake, its animal noise scaring the dog
her collar breaking at the lunge
as she vanishes into charred underscrub

Between my boots in double bind
a black snake, underbelly all aflame, winces
and flickers an outline of lemniscates
Pours over my foot and off the path

As the wind swells, a white frond of smoke
plumes ahead of me, then another
and several more taper up all around
Their spacing a uniform distance
tracking the old ring road south