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Thursday, November 17, 2022


by Renee Williams


On October 29th, while on a gravel bike ride in Vinton County, Ohio, three unleashed, uncontained pit bulls attacked Eva Simons, pinned and mauled her. Thankfully, three Good Samaritans happened to drive by and were able to save her life. Eva underwent emergency surgery and the amputation of the left leg above the knee. She has a long road ahead and will require multiple surgeries to reconstruct the remaining leg. —from the Gofundme for Eva Simons

An innocent,
walking down a rural road, alone, away from the other bicyclists, 
wanting to get back to her vehicle to fix a flat, 
when she became quarry to three unchained pit bulls, 
knowing no other way than to attack, 
their so-called area invaded, 
by an unknown person, diminutive, vulnerable.
Barking, growling, snarling, 
incisors like blades,
tearing, ripping, slicing skin,
feasting on flesh from bone, savoring the salty taste of blood,
chewing, gorging, vivisecting,
mauling, mangling,
destroying, devouring, dismembering, 
eating her alive 
like pack of lions in the veld, gnawing an impala,
for twenty minutes
in a delightful game of mere response, 
base, vile, predatory instincts kicking in, 
The owners,
at a bustling urban hospital, so far from the country lane, 
a newborn child, sick.
Did the dogs offer protection in the depths of the forest, 
or the illusion of power, toughness, 
as we human animals fall prey
to the intoxicating allure 
of controlling what shouldn’t be controlled
like domesticating a lion or tiger, leading it, guiding it, exerting dominance?
Or, perhaps the first dog was taken in, alone, afraid, desperate for care,
mirroring the pitied human discards of Appalachia,
victims of a poor economy, limited employment options, and no place to call home.
It’s said that bad choices make great stories.
But why do you need three pit bulls?
Unwanted dogs multiply like rabbits,
and who has the time to tend to a dog that wasn’t wanted in the first place,
that was dumped in front of the house, 
and the kids wouldn’t stop crying until it was taken in, 
but it has killer instincts, jaws that could snap a bone in a heartbeat,
and work is calling because someone is sick with this damned Covid,
the kids have that new math homework to be done,
and the refrigerator just went on the fritz
for the second time this month?
Pit bulls, bred for fighting, vicious, beastly
can be caring, loving pets.
Yet the stereotype is perpetuated,
again, and again…
Just another country road,
in another county township,
sycamore leaves falling,
sunlight waning,
gunshots from the sheriff’s pistol. 

Renee Williams is a retired English professor, who has written for Guitar Digest, Alien Buddha Press, and Fevers of the Mind.