The Rat Dream

By Megan Robb

Two rats came running out of the cupboard

Shiny and sleek like the ones who scurry

In sinister pictures of the Black Plague

My panicked Spanish struggled through the phone

Ratas! Cocina! Pronto! Ayuda!”

Exterminator came all dressed in white

He finished his work and was almost gone

A third rat scrambled out of the cupboard

Brown like the New York City rats that race

From Woodlawn to Coney Island and then

Feverishly back again by nightfall

Except this one had close-set eyes and wore

A tiny T-shirt like a Disney mouse

No mates!” I cried. “This one is different

It’s American. It’s like me, señor.

Exterminator asked, “Is the rat yours?”

“Well, no,” I told him. “Well, miss,” he told me

“A rat is a rat

Especially one

Crawling in cupboards.”

He took him away

Nothing more to say.

Contributing writer Megan Robb is a writer, consultant and editor living in Raleigh, North Carolina. Her articles can be found at,, and, as well as her personal website,