Poem: “Squirrel” by Souvankham Thammavongsa


We have a squirrel in the living room
but it’s dead

It doesn’t look dead
the eyes

filled with green glass beads
are open

four little paws frozen in a pose
and a fluffed tail


We put it next to the stuffed animals

they could be friends
and get along altogether now


The stuffed animals range in bright cartoon colors
covered up with balls of lint

and their plastic mouths
hang open


all in on some joke they’ve told


The squirrel
is the only one not laughing


a cost of the matter
of having been real once


and maybe
that’s the joke


to laugh
at what you don’t know


If it could talk
it would say:


at least I’ve known what it is like to be alive


24252101_10159566469225487_555121553_nSouvankham Thammavongsa is the author of Light (2013), winner of the Trillium Book Award for Poetry, Small Arguments (2003), winner of the ReLit Award, and Found (2007), now a short film screened at festivals worldwide including TIFF, L.A. Shorts Fest, and Dok Leipzig. She has been in residence at Yaddo and has read her poems at the Guggenheim Museum.

About Laomagination Media

Focused on a mission to develop a body of multicultural, multimedia resources that meets the needs of Lao Americans and their friends and families interested in the speculative arts, whether it’s science fiction, fantasy, horror or other artistic genres engaging the Lao imagination and heritage.
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1 Response to Poem: “Squirrel” by Souvankham Thammavongsa

  1. Pingback: Souvankham Thammavongsa Poem at Lao American Review – Lao Poetry Online

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