Animal Cruelty


Have you been drinking toilet water again

I ask my dog as he smiles and pants puffs of sewage

I have often caught him neck deep in the bowl

The sound of lapping reverberating

Until he lifts his head and looks behind

His eyes balls of pride

His tail a ticking metronome

Having found this bottomless well

He is as full of himself as he is of urine

Something in his gaze beckons me over

As if he would have me on all fours,

Drinking deep of his discovery

Surely, he believes, this merits some petting

A treat perhaps?

Acquiescing I pull down my pants,

Take a seat on his fountain

And give him what he deserves

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Troydon Wainwright is a philosopher and Reiki Master based in Cape Town. Born with mild cerebral palsy and dyslexia, Toydon learnt to write as a way to overcome the barriers his dyslexia placed in front of him. “I wrote my way out of dyslexia,” said Troydon, “or at least to the point where reading and writing aren’t a problem anymore.” During the day he works as an educational facilitator (someone who helps special needs students cope academically and become more independent). At night he dedicates his time to writing. He has won a Nova award for his short story, The Sangoma’s Storm, and been a feature poet at the Off the Wall poetry readings in Cape Town and at Cape Town Central Library. Three of his poems were also included in the anthology Africa’s Best New Poets. He has also been published in the South African Literary journal, New Contrast. One of his Facebook posts, in which he took a stand against racism, has gone viral (

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