Jonathan Weinert

Squirrel Hour
April 18, 2021 Weinert Jonathan

Squirrel Hour


The wind goes into the backyard pines,
a long grammar of sighs,
and comes out needle-sharp and shouting.
Way off in a bush, the cry
of a small bird, like a squeaky door,
What stillness it takes
to move out of oneself.
I sit on the deck in my zero-
gravity recliner
and watch a stop-motion squirrel scope me
as he tacks
beneath the feeder, tense
with self-awareness.
He strips a hazelnut like a lathe,
pins me with his bitter stare,
then strips another,
and he will not scare.

Jonathan Weinert is the author of three books of poems: A Slow Green Sleep, winner of the Saturnalia Books Editors Prize; In the Mode of Disappearance, winner of the Nightboat Poetry Prize; and Thirteen Small Apostrophes, a chapbook. He is co-editor, with Kevin Prufer, of Until Everything Is Continuous Again: American Poets on the Recent Work of W. S. Merwin. Jonathan lives and works in Stow, Massachusetts.