Sean Cho A.

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Sean Cho A.

Dog Theory

and there’s another theory that says
an object becomes real
only after we name it. Think of the dog
in the shelter
you can’t. Not really, you can picture
a dog but not the dog I’m talking
about. But go there, let it lick your
face, let the vet tech tell you the creature’s
backstory: how he was chained
to an abandoned storage shed
off State Street, and some local
kids found him while ghost
hunting right before the first snow
of December. Of course there were
seemingly untangleable mats
in his ears and many, many ticks.

Give it a name that is much too
human-like like Max
then try to leave Max there
alone in a concrete lined cage
with the sound of other not-yet-
Maxes howling and crying, crying
and howling. See?
you can’t. The pee
on your carpet, the chew up porch furniture
is all very real. Max is real. You and

Max are friends. For the next decade or so
there will still be times when you feel alone.


Sean Cho A. reads “Dog Theory”

Sean Cho A. is the author of American Home (Autumn House 2021) winner of the Autumn House Press chapbook contest. His work can be future found or ignored in Copper Nickel, Pleiades, The Penn Review, The Massachusetts Review, Nashville Review, among others. Sean is a graduate of the MFA program at The University of California Irvine and a PhD Student at the University of Cincinnati. Find him @phlat_soda