Squirrel Problem

By Zachary Schomburg b. 1977 Zachary Schomburg
I watch a squirrel get run over by a car on my walk to work. She is lying dead in the street and still has an acorn in her little hands. I am amazed at how she is able to hold on to her acorn after being tumbled like that, after bouncing so high off the street. I walk over to the squirrel and see that her face is blown to bits and looks like uncased sausage spilling onto the asphalt. But that acorn is still so tight in her hands. I pick her up by her tail, take off my dress shirt and swaddle her in it, then put her in my bag. I know right where she is as I walk into work, everybody looking at me, everybody asking me about my shirtlessness. The world is as steady as if it were sewn into the skin of the universe.

Zachary Schomburg, "Squirrel Problem" from Fjords vol. 1. Copyright © 2012 by Zachary Schomburg.  Reprinted by permission of Black Ocean.

Source: Fjords vol. 1 (Black Ocean, 2012)

Discover this poem’s context and related poetry, articles, and media.

Poet Zachary Schomburg b. 1977

POET’S REGION U.S., Northwestern

Subjects Living, Death, Sorrow & Grieving, Activities, Jobs & Working, Nature, Animals

Poetic Terms Prose Poem

Biography

Poet and translator Zachary Schomburg was born in Omaha, Nebraska, and raised in Iowa. He earned a BA from the College of the Ozarks and a PhD in creative writing-poetry from the University of Nebraska. His books of poetry include The Man Suit (2007), Scary, No Scary (2009), and Fjords vol 1 (2012). He has said of his work, which is known for its absurd, tender humor, “Mostly I want my poems to generate their own energy through . . .

Continue reading this biography

Poem Categorization

SUBJECT Living, Death, Sorrow & Grieving, Activities, Jobs & Working, Nature, Animals

POET’S REGION U.S., Northwestern

Poetic Terms Prose Poem

Report a problem with this poem

Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

This poem has learning resources.

This poem is good for children.

This poem has related video.

This poem has related audio.