Arsenic Lobster poetry journal Final Issue 2018
My Mother Keeps Finding Lions in her Apartment
Marta Shaffer

My mother keeps finding lions in her apartment

Small ones. She says they steal things

and leave foreign objects behind:

feathers, turquoise beads, pieces

of clay pottery.

She says their snoring at night

keeps her awake, loud

like a New Orleans brass band.

She sometimes catches them staring at her

from between objects on the table,

and when she goes to pull them out

like weeds, they’ve vanished

into the lines of an old receipt

or a medical bill.

I tried to teach her the term invasive species,

but she says she doesn’t speak Spanish.

About Marta Shaffer

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