by Joseph Baldwin

Even when sitting on the lawn,
squirrels seem perched:
clinging as they do to ground
as if it might sway
in the next wind.
Never are they less than
tense, sinuously sleek.
Always poised for the quick
dart, the lunge, or
skittering flight to safety.

Never a wasted motion: witness
especially the flickering twitch
in a false direction before the
true thrust; such feints
are of most value.

They make fools of cats,
who, to salvage something,
break off the chase, subside,
and look regal and uncaring.