The Birthday Party

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Trick Dogs and Warthogs are rolling on the lawn

of the child’s birthday party

the Trick Dog is tame the Warthog is Wild

only you wouldn’t know it

They mock-fight, bite and yelp for help

the Trick Dog runs under a folding chair

The Warthog charges at a seven year old boy who

wide-eyed with terror

drops the cake and ice-cream (the Warthog pauses; licks it up)

Mrs. Kennedy calls the fire department—nine-one-one

the Warthog has them all trapped inside

The house and has completely cut-off any avenues for escape

The Trick Dog plays along—barking

The Warthog charges at the French doors on the patio

they buckle, but don’t break

All the children at the party are screaming with terror

The owner of the Trick Dog is drunk

The firemen come and, with a hose, kill the Warthog

the children venture back out into the yard

newly washed as if after a rainstorm

the crepe paper decorations dissolving into watercolors

the dead Warthog blasted against the chain-link fence

The Trick Dog is loudly reprimanded by its drunk owner

for being a stupid dog, etc.

The children are picked up at 6:00 (most want their parents to see

the Warthog)

The hosts receive suspicious glances

Is a Warthog suitable entertainment for 2nd graders?

Isn’t that the Trick Dog owned by that drunk guy?

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