Track through the house on snowshoes,

ice from salt-crusted boots

across the kitchen tiles,

drive the dogsled through, grinning huskies with ice-colored eyes.

Winter skelters full-tailed,

the bandit raccoon who leers down from the rafters—

We listen to the floorboards of this cockamamie frame,

dizzy from the trapezoidal tilted little rooms,

the animals bed down as we bed down,

bedrolls by the fireplace, blizzard and flame.

Maxine Susman lives in Kingston and teaches adult education at Rutgers and in Princeton. She has published five poetry collections and her work appears in numerous poetry journals.

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