I’ve done a little internet research on the sex lives of dingoes, inspired by their recent reappearance in my community. Interestingly, they only mate once or twice per year! Which must make the sex pretty damned hot. Check out this video – these two are smoking: http://www.arkive.org/dingo/canis-lupus-dingo/video-di09a.html
The other interesting thing is that in a pack of dingoes, only the alpha male and alpha female are allowed to mate – the subordinates are actively prevented from doing so. A bit mean, but I guess it’s nature’s way of ensuring only the strongest dogs breed. Here are some disparate narratives inspired by the love lives of dingoes.
Howling for an Alpha
The dingoes are live tonight,
pursuing love like confetti
in the moonlit streets.
Calls pepper the canopy
with unresolved disputes.
He was always free to ask but chose
to eat the question marks, washing
them down with bottles of wine
The dingoes are free.
Say it again: the dingoes are free.
They might be crying,
might be crying out for each other
but at least
chained up about it.
Now they’re chewing on the bones
of an old debate – the Dingo Fence.
Alpha female hits the fence again. She’s run
up and down that line
the past few months
but there’s no way in.
She’s still being punished
for some other dingo’s sin.
The male on the other side is a sorry beast.
A road train collected his story. Now
he’s mangled from the hips down. He drags
his sex around like a debt. Cannot
howl to the moon – he’s forgotten the words. Stammers
an apology for being born, hurls
himself at the barbed wire
again and again, beats
the love out of her poetry
until it’s dawn.
And the males are closing in.
‘Everyone wants a bit,’ the old dog says,
‘Everyone wants a bit
of the alpha’s scent.’
But she’s lost her friend.
They remember the best ways to please her
but she’s lost her crippled friend.
you just stand there and watch
as this faithful dingo
becomes a line in a poem,
fodder for a song.
You write her into the grain
of a cheap, pine coffin.
collect the awards.
Alpha male, meanwhile,
has waited. He’s watched her attempts,
rubbed her paws when they ached
from the pointless trips along that fence.
Only alphas mate. So they always
knew it would end like this:
her leading him back
to her lair again;
him taking her by the lead, taking
his place by her side as her equal.
He drinks her down.
He drinks like she’s the Last Supper
and he’s a disciple.
He works on her like a bassist
works his strings. He takes her
to the top of that ridge, tunes
the growl at the back of her throat
and then releases her
to the waves that come in.
they cover each other in smiles
and thankful howls.
She remembers that song now.
She recalls its obvious title:
it was ‘Fun’.
The next day, the dingo appears.
There she is,
skipping down the bitumen, rippling
hope between her bones,
grinning like there’s no tomorrow,
no poetry to burn –
only a swell of satisfaction
in her womb.