on how dogs choose their people

The day he proclaims,

I want a dog, too,

I shrug and say, Okay.

When he brings her to meet me,

I stop mid-step, taken by

the soft chocolate of her fur.

Sheโ€™s beautiful, I whisper,

and she licks me.

In the days that follow,

she finds herself on my bed,

follows my dog and me to the bathroom,

lays outside the door and waits.

He seeths,

She is supposed to be my dog,

and yet, she has picked me,

because trauma recognizes trauma

and seeks it out.

When he takes my money,

my prescribed painkillers,

and his stuff,

I tell him to leave the dog.

When the vet consoles me, saying,

She was sick before she was yours,

All I hear is

She was yours.