Terry Trowbridge
Squirrel Witchery

Squirrel witchcraft dwells on dowsing,

weather prediction, hospitality from trunk to twig tip

on a homesteading tree limb

Differences between

subdivision squirrel kitchen witch

foraging garbage cans, BBQ crumbs,

dropped children’s snacks

forest witch

hissing duels with dryads over nuts

awestruck by the antlered demigods

bardic lore only shared in winter

while bear shamans and turtle nuns hibernate

urban hedge witch

erudite schoolyard/library topiary scavenger

alley cat duelist, pigeon conspirator

fire escape mountaineer bird telepathy

bone and metal runic rat warding circles

racoon defying bone fetishes

tail tarot not unlike racoon rune stones

not shuffled but scattered on wind

like digging nuts in snow, only the face-down are read

splooting trance, resembling yoga,

action without action,

some say the greatest splooters can turn into foxes

(foxes say their mystics disguise as squirrels in order to climb)

(but who can believe a fox)

certain acorns grow over winter

in springtime a wish comes true

although, too many wishes leads to madness

rabid frenzies, greed unhinged,

insatiable teeth that turn to fangs

these squirrels, the witches say, can speak to wendigo.

rot seeds within a horse’s hoofbeat of wherever they sleep