This morning I awoke in gratitude
actually said aloud, Thank you, Ambien, Mom, Dad,
and God (just in case), my husband already stretching
and exercising after checking for limp tailed prostrate
mounds of fur in the traps he’d set the night before
and takes to a place I only imagine. The sad scatter
of tiny skeletons. I will let mice scurry on the floors
and in drawers long before I’ll pick up
that small quietness and wing it into woods.
Not all death I avoid—as a hospice volunteer,
I have felt the last beat of more than one heart,
touched stilled skin that lacquers as it leaves,
believe that death and birth share a world.
I should thank him first. Before the Ambien,
before my dead parents, before a deity I do not know.
He is the person who saved a different me
more swelled with need, not exactly like the helicopter
that lifted the lobsterman from Montauk after hours
of treading dark water with only a small buoy
but like that.