I pass him each morning on my walk into work.
He’s always at the bottom of the same tree
with his nose in the same ground
probably burying or recovering goodies
he’ll need when things get scarce again.
He’s thinking if I just keep doing what I’m known
for doing the man won’t bother me
and in fact, won’t even see me.
He’s decided all he has to do in an emergency is
jump up to his place of safety and then leap
across its leaves and over the nearby rooftops
until he’s as good as forgotten about.
Is he always on edge, or hypervigilant? Of course.
Does he have complex PTSD? Does he fear
endangering himself unknowingly? And does he still
try to figure out how to get what he needs
without becoming food? Of course, he does. He’s a squirrel.
When he gets home at night, he puts his feet up
on a toadstool and meditates on the sensation
of his body at rest, and thinks holy fuck, I am