At a Dog Fight – by Ryan Stone


The sweating men form a ring,
aroused by proximity to death.
Snatched from backyards as children slept,
two dogs now circle and snarl.
Flies feast on blood and one dog goes down,
back legs splayed, front torn and flailing.
Defeat is a whimper – sharp teeth at the throat –
from which men turn and tally bets.
I step from my father’s shadow
to stroke the blood-matted fur
of the dog left discarded on straw.
I know how it feels to be flayed.




Ryan Stone lives in Melbourne, Australia. He shares his home in the Dandenong Ranges with his wife, two beautiful sons and a German Shepherd.  On daily walks through his forest surrounds, he often peers down rabbit holes. His poetry has recently appeared in Writers’ Forum Magazine, Eunoia Review, Black Poppy Review, Napalm and Novocain, Poppy Road Review, Ekphrastic and Pyrokinection

6 thoughts on “At a Dog Fight – by Ryan Stone

  1. Pingback: * New Poem Published * | days of stone

  2. Powerful and awful piece Ryan. But very well written at the same time, I hate dog fighting, especially sincecI get the sense these are pets. Poor little boy, I think it’s horrible the one dog dies so painfully like that, but the hug presence of the boys words, makes you even more disturbed that somehow he is hurt far worse or as bad as those dogs forced to fight. Great job, this so deserved publication!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Pingback: At a Dog Fight | days of stone

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