The Squirrel in the Attic of His Brain

by Robin Helweg-Larsen

The squirrel in the attic of his brain
Shreds photographs, pulls memories apart.
The old dog in the basement of his heart
Howls, lonely, soft, monotonous as rain.
And somewhere further underneath, a snake
In hibernation stirs, irked by its skin.
Up where the world’s news and supplies come in
Through the five senses of his face, to make
The room in which a garrulous parrot squawks
And sometimes songbirds sing — it’s his belief
Mice gnaw behind the wainscots of his teeth.
The cat of consciousness, impassive, walks
Toward the door to go out for the night:
Is everything (oh dog, shut up!) all right?

[ Previously published in Visions International (US), October 2007 ]

Robin Helweg-Larsen has lived in Chapel Hill, NC, for some 20 years, running a business game company with his wife Eliza. His poetry is mostly published in the UK in Ambit, Candelabrum and Snakeskin.
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Pat Jones
Published 28 July 2010