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by Cheryl Latif

for weeks the squirrels have made a mess
of autumn, gnawing through tender branches,
their work falling to the eaves, clogging the gutters.
one, fat & beautiful, chooses instead
to climb the old-growth stump
outside the kitchen window.
he sits in its mouth-like notch
where i have left food,
greedily separating shell from seed.
his frenetic pace belies
the fact that i will return,
leave more for him tomorrow.
today, on my way to the mailbox,
i stop to enjoy his birdlike calls.
wind sighs through cedars, waving me on
as though this were not one of God's moments,
as though one could ever be through with delight.


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