Of Things And Home

By William Bearhart

Where else do mice scurry along the bones of a couch,
among coiled springs and dog food stash, where
a body is wrapped up in quilts because October
is a cold house, no hot water but a dog’s water dish
frozen in the dark living room where a body is wrapped
         up in quilts,
no food except a couple cans of commod beef stew,
a grocery store across the street, lingering
in the parking lot, two payphones and no one to call
because October is an empty house, a month
abandoned of light bills and mother
a quilt of frayed threads and father pulling at the threads
of another weeklong binge.
Where else can a body have a husk and still feel
                                                 like the rib cage of a mouse
brittle and starved
but stashing
buttons or dog food or threads from a quilt,
                                                 a skeleton
among skeletons
             of things we don’t miss.

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