The Grave Of The Kitchen Mouse

The stone says "Coors"
The gay carpet says "Camels"
Spears of dried grass
The little sticks the children gathered
The leaves the wind gathered

The cat did not kill him
The dog did not, not the trap
Or lightning, or the rain's anger
The tree's claws
The black teeth of the moon

The sun drilled over and over
Dusk of his first death
The earth is worn away
A tuft of gray fur ruffles the wind
One paw, like a carrot
Lunges downward in darkness
For the soul

Dawn scratching at the windows
Counted and closed
The doors holding
The house quiet
The kitchen bites its tongue
And makes bread

by Philip Levine

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