Meditation on Holding a Friend’s Mouse Near the End of His Life
By Claire Buck
Cupped in my hands, his chest rises and falls
with each quick gasp; my fingers trace the ridge
over his spine. Within the living walls
of his body’s cathedral, curved ribs bridge
a vault that echoes with the hidden choir
of rushing veins and respirating cells.
Each living creature burns with inner fire
against the cold of entropy, each tells
the glory of the Maker with a hymn
composed of enzymes, ions, blood, and breath.
The cytoplasm and the seraphim
join songs against the gathered force of death.
No loss of man or mouse goes unregarded
by Heaven; nothing loved will be discarded.