Kathryn Mockler: Three Poems


The pot-bellied pigs were racing
hard—only they weren’t pigs
in the animal sense, they were
cops—really really large cops
who were racing bottle caps on
the backs of stray dogs.

They knew it was a strange
hobby but rarely talked about
it because to draw too much
attention to what they were
doing would take all the fun out
of it—like a magician revealing
to his audience the magic
behind all of his tricks.

One of the pot-bellied pigs
brought a sad friend with him
to watch the races. After five
hours, the sad friend got bored
and twitchy and said—what
about all the crime we have to
stop—you know the robbers,
the thugs, and the stockbroker
scammers. And we have to
help the victims—you know,
the people who get their bikes
stolen. We can’t forget about

Sweating and out of breath and
embarrassed for his sad friend,
the pot-bellied pig grabbed him
by both wrists and squeezed
hard. No, he said with his teeth
clenched, we don’t have to do
any of that. Our job is to finish
this race.





Country, Suburbia,
and Big City were
sharing a tent in
the backyard
after a play date
at the county fair.

Country felt a little
crowded and said
he was going out
for fresh air. Big
City slept soundly.
But Suburbia
grabbed Country’s
arm as he pulled
back the flap on the
tent and said make
sure you come back
—we need you.




I think about the shooting
because all shootings
are one shooting. I think
about all the places to
hide to avoid bullets: air
vents, storage lockers,
somewhere normal.


Kathryn Mockler is a writer and filmmaker. She is the author of the poetry books The Saddest Place on Earth (DC Books, 2012) and Onion Man (Tightrope Books, 2011). She teaches creative writing and screenwriting at the University of Western Ontario and is the co-founder/ co-editor of the online literary & arts journal The Rusty Toque.

Image by Dave Poolman.

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