First world problems
by John Roth


I’m choking down dark roasted coffee
from a cheap ceramic mug

that reads “World’s best dad” on it, standing
sleepily on the front porch

with a newspaper in hand. The neighbor’s
Shih Tzu is squatting on

my lawn again, but I’m too tired to notice,
flicking night-dust from my eyes.

On these summer mornings, the clouds
look fluffy and yellow

like scrambled eggs floating in a pan.
All I can think of is breakfast

as the neighbor whistles for his mangy
mutt to come inside.

Whenever I confront him about putting
the dog in his own yard

he becomes defensive, whines about how
it’s not his fault. I point out

that, as the owner, it is and he best learn
to keep his problems on a leash.






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