UPON FINDING A FIELD MOUSE DEAD ON THE RIVER ROAD

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His tail is long and frozen in a wave
With an elegant coil at the tip like the tendril of a fiddle fern.

Winter coat a tweedy grey,
The belly white,
Kept warm with spots of ocher

And his right eye is open, wanting to see what killed him.
The little smile remaining on his face
Says, “I will wait for you.”

So I lift him with a twig, place him in a fir tree for some winter hungry jay.
Then counting him among my dearest friends,
Say a little prayer and walk
Away.

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