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Patience by Luke Stromberg


His ears set back, his eyes fixed on the dark
Beneath the radiator, the cat crouches,
Glimpsing whiskers there, two feet, a nose.
And when a mouse decides to test the light—
Sniffing the kitchen air—he rises higher
On his haunches—But he doesn’t pounce.
Instead, he allows it to escape, tail twitching
Behind it, back into the dark, untried.

Reckless, he waits. Patience is also risk.
And though it may not seem this way to most,
That takes real nerve: letting a chance slip past,
Believing that a better one will come.
Meanwhile, the pretzel bag’s chewed full of holes.
Turds are on the counter. The mouse, alive.

by Luke Stromberg, first published in The Rotary Dial

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Editor’s Note: Blank verse and an excellent volta provide structure for this sonnet, despite the lack of end rhyme. What one expects is not always what one gets.


2 responses to “Patience by Luke Stromberg”

  1. Ryan Dowling Avatar

    This is great. I like how it takes liberty with the traditional form, and also takes liberty with the traditional cat-and-mouse poem, highlighting the wait instead of the attack.

  2. […] Autumn Sky Poetry DAILY, March 9, 2016 — by Luke […]

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