The James Hearst Digital Archive

Home » Poetry » Frustration


Text of Poem

Thoughts run like mice
in the pantry and if I
catch one the trap squeezes out
eyes and dung. I save the bait
and throw away the body—what use
is a dead thought to a man
whose house won’t keep out
mice that aren’t thoughts
and whose head can’t keep in
thoughts that aren’t mice?

First Line
Thoughts run like mice
Original Pub Location
Original Publication Date
Original Citation
Virginia Quarterly Review 46 (Autumn 1970) 594.
Complete Poems
Hearst Collections
Word Count
Poetic Form
Bibliographic Notes

listed as Frustrations in Shaken by Leaf Fall and Snake in the Strawberries, but catalogued as Frustration in the Complete Works (should find out what it was in Virginia Quarterly)