“Names” -Bao remix

I’m the only one in the family

with a name that has three different meanings

*Woof* Bao isn’t even a dog name.

I know, because my human parents told me.

It means: treasure (in Chinese) and protector (in Vietnamese),

It also means: steamed buns, a dish part of dim sum, 

something my parents love to eat.

And truth be told, that description is about right

because I am definitely a treasured protector to my parents

I just need to remind them I’m so much more than delicious buns.

My name labors out of some human’s mouths

in an awkward and painful way

I hear my parents tell their friends on the phone:

BOW, like take a BOW, not bo-ah.

I’ve learned not to bark when I hear their friends mispronounce it.

Mom says she thought it was an awesome name.

Gave me this gift of being a fierce protector and now curses

how well I herd the three of us together in the same room.

My parents probably wanted a dog who would sit in her crate

and chew on her kong while not barking when they left the room for a minute.

Instead, they got a loyal 10-week old pup who is just getting started,

unless they try to leave me alone in my crate again.

*inspired by Elizabeth Acevedo’s “Names” in The Poet X

Photo by Joan Tran on Unsplash

6 thoughts on ““Names” -Bao remix

  1. I love the name and that it has more than one meaning! 10 week old puppies are adorable. I like the way you wrote this from Bao’s point of view. It kept me wanting more of the puppy’s thoughts.


  2. When I first heard her name and the meaning and connections I couldn’t help but smile – you both are so thoughtful and the level of care you put into her name is only the start of the level of care and attention to detail you will give her for her entire life. She’s one lucky pup and I cannot wait to meet her! PS: I was hoping for another picture…


  3. My only critique of this post is I would like a picture of Bao please.

    I love that name for a pup, by the way. My favorite thing about this was hearing Bao’s thoughts about the name from her own perspective.


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