How to Train Your Squirrel by April Salzano

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How to Train Your Squirrel

to eat from a bowl is not an easy task.

You should choose a color other

than blaze orange, a material besides

plastic. Cajun almonds and salted sesame sticks

placed near the patio door seem to cause

aggression toward what used to be

his playmates in the yard. He chases away

all critters except the Nut Hatch who is able

to fly stealth operations and grab peanuts

without landing completely. Do not wait

until the blinking creature is scratching

at the glass to offer a treat. This reinforces

demanding behavior and does not promote

sharing with friends. Ignore the urge to touch

his patchy grey coat or to open the door

wide enough to permit his entrance.

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Find recent work and a bio of Salzano here. Additional poems on WIZ are available here.

 

Photo by A.J. Huffman. Used with permission.

A Dozing Squirrel by April Salzano

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A Dozing Squirrel

full of almonds and sesame sticks, warms

his belly on wood of deck. Spread

like a loaf of homemade bread, his eyes

become commas even as his chest expands,

contracts like a blood pressure pump.

Front paws hang over edge as if more cat

than woodland wanderer, tail curled over his back,

temporarily not twitching in anxiety. I stand

at the window, wait to make sure no injury

is preventing his chaotic, convulsive foraging.

I turn away, distracted. When I return,

seconds later, he is gone.

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photo3 April Salzano has previously published on small creatures on WIZ. Salzano teaches college writing in Pennsylvania where she lives with her husband and two sons. She recently finished her first collection of poetry, for which she is seeking a publisher. Her work has appeared in journals such as Poetry Salzburg, Convergence, Ascent Aspirations, Convergence, The Camel Saloon, Centrifugal Eye, Deadsnakes, Montucky Review, Visceral Uterus and Salome, Poetry Quarterly, and is forthcoming in Writing Tomorrow and Rattle. She also serves as co-editor at Kind of a Hurricane Press.

 

Photo by the author.

Some Words by Dayna Patterson

Abandoned_Jewish_cemetry_in_Trstín_01

 

Divorced from their meanings,

some words have lovely sound.

 

Poo,

with its soft plosive puh,

the same oo as in moon,

a word poets are fond of.

 

Chlamydia

could be a beautiful vine

with violet petals unfurling

around the kitchen bay window.

 

Balaclava

might refer to the delicate,

pale collar bones

of a water nymph.

 

Bergen-Belsen

could be generic for sanctuary,

a garden with no corpse flowers,

no odor of decay.

 

Bashar Hafez al-Assad

could be the name of a saint,

Saint of the underdog, of lost

buttons, of broken crockery.

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Dayna Patterson is Poetry Editor at Psaltery & Lyre. For more, go here.

Photo via Wikimedia Commons by Doronenko, 2012, of an abandoned Jewish Cemetery in Trstin.

The day you came out to me by Dayna Patterson

 

Photo by JRLibby, 2012 via Wikimedia Commons.

The day you came out to me

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Dayna Patterson is Poetry Editor at Psaltery & Lyre. For more, and information about where else to find her work, go here.

Photo by JRLibby, 2012 via Wikimedia Commons.