THE Mouse

The mouse has eluded

the trap beneath

the kitchen sink for three

nights in a row; the peanut

butter is gone, the trap

sprung and empty when I come

each morning to peek

behind the plastic can.

I picture his tongue

small and wet

as a snowflake teasing

the peanut butter

out from under the bar

the coil taut and tense,

his eyes wide

with the wonder

of what he does.

The dance must be

perfect, the timing delicate

as a sigh, the last lick

a flick of the tail

and the trap hurls

itself closed

on air.

Three nights

of such sorcery earns

him a life and the right

to leave his droppings

in the drawer.

  • Susan A. Katz from “Dreaming Missouri” due out in 2022 from Austin Macauley Publishers, Inc.

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