Posts Tagged ‘mice’

Some Never Learn

Don’t think I don’t see you

scampering across my kitchen floor

with that scrap of yarn you’ve stolen

from my old green scarf,

you with your jumpy eyes,

your cold twitchy nose.

Don’t think that I don’t hear you

scratching in my inner walls

with your ever-growing teeth

and your tiny piercing claws.

I still run my fingers

across the thin scars.

And don’t think that just because

I took the cheese out of the trap

that I meant for you to come around.

Don’t think it was on purpose

that I left that piece

of lemon cake beside the bed,

the kind with cream cheese frosting,

the kind you told me once that you like best—

that time when you so sweetly curled

into my hands, your fur as gray as morning light,

I remember, so silken, so soft.

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Year of the Mouse

Almost half of the carrots

were nibbled before we pulled

them from the ground.

Oh the mice this year

have been happy mice

with plenty to eat in my garden.

I remember the Yinnuwok legend

about how the mice were once

blunt nosed and ugly,

but because Mouse so beautifully

mended the clothes of the maker of magic

he rewarded Mouse

with a sharp pointy nose

made for sniffing out food and

a soft silky coat so that Mouse

could more easily slip

into tiny holes

when his enemies come.

Today I am the enemy.

Even so, I marvel how quick

the mice are to find our stash

beneath the spigot for rinsing,

how sprightly they escape into invisible holes

in the ground when I chase them away.

I would not be able to bless them,

not today when frustration

is more weight than word.

Still, after processing, when my son suggests

that we take the waste ends of the carrots

out to the field as a gift to the mice,

I say yes. It is not out of love

for the mice, but love for my boy

and his big and growing heart.

They say no good deed goes

unpunished. They say that the magic maker

stroked Mouse’s hair with his fingers

and that was what made it shine.

They say do unto others as you …

I stroke my son’s hair,

still boyishly gold, before he walks

out the door with his small offering

and throws the ends into the field.

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The Things We Do

It’s fall
and the mice
make their way
into the kitchen,
one time
five in a night.
They find
a hole
in the floor
beneath the sink
where the pipes
come up.
I do not know
if they are driven
by hunger
or warmth,
but I do know
how I hate
the sound
of the trap
as it snaps,
how cruel
it feels
to prefer
my comfort
over theirs.
I wonder
if it’s just
because they are small
that I can justify
the act.
I wonder
where the line is,
how big
would be
too big.
I force myself
to look
at their eyes
still bright
as I take them
out into
the night.

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