little rat

little rat poem by steven james humphreys

there was this

little cute rat

(it seemed like still a baby)

running in and out

of our garage

it kept biting holes

in my bird seed and cat kibble

bags in the garage storage cupboard.

I set up a baited trap

that was animal friendly

not causing it any harm.

I’ve used it before

as it is meant for

catch and release

which I often had

done in the past.

he didn’t get caught

even though I had

their favorite peanut

butter on a cracker.

it got in my garage

squeezing through the outside

sill screen

a tiny hole

the garden faucet

line ran through.

so I put a new screen on

and then it didn’t return.

the next day I found it

drowned in the pool skimmer

and tried to give it resuscitation

by pushing on its little chest

to make it breathe.

I tried and tried

finally leaving him on the

grass overnight

hoping he would come

back to life

and run away.

but, he lay there lifeless

the next morning.

I felt as though

I gave him

his death sentence.

I was deeply sorry for what had

happened that if I would have

not screened in that hole he slipped through

he would have survived and lived a

full happy life.

I guess no one gets a guarantee

how long he will live.

not even us.

I value all life

no matter how


the rest of

the world

considers it.

funny, how I

used to laugh

at stuff like this.

It’s no longer

a laughing




I am no

longer the me

I used to be.

I am a

changed man.

I no longer

laugh at what

things I used to think

funny, but cry about

things I never used to.

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