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Poetry: Work

Snow Owls by Cameron Morse

Falling snow the silk
screen around me, a padded
room to scream in, 
I perch porch-sheltered 
upon a bucket of rock salt. 
Wind-buoyed branches incite 
secondary showers. Voices 
down the lane are near
to me, near as my dreams
are to the surface these nights 
Naomi soaks a stain 
of honeydew through the swaddle. 
I roll away from lamplight.  
Away from Lili rinsing. 
Mom lays eyes upon the light-brown 
owl whose hoots haunt her 
bedroom window. Nights she dreams 
Dad is back, cooking up a storm 
in the kitchen. Mornings he slept in 
I climbed into bed to ask help 
with the math my brain wasn’t ready for. 
Of course it all makes sense to me 
now, snow battering the ear 
flaps of my trapper hat, the black dolphin 
fins of my mittens, the snowblower’s 
sickly stench of wasted gas, trough 
tamped into berm of snow-fort, 
make-believe igloo. Snow
owls pulling rabbit skins inside-out 
like red socks for owlets 
Mom believes to be monogamous.

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