Saturday, April 14, 2012

April 13th Poem--NaPoWriMo--A sappy poem about my fish

I got the call in my best friend’s kitchen,
watching her mom pour crepes.

We found Goldie this morning
gasping in the sink.

The weeks I’d spent teaching her
to thrust her copper body out
through the liquid confines of her tank
for a split second before splashing down again—
a hundred guided attempts clamped gently
between my thumb and index finger.

We tried to save her—Mom moved her through the water
pumping her little gills. We were just too late. We decided to wait
'til you got home to flush her.

I hung up without speaking, walked out front,
and sat at the edge of the driveway.

Dad and I rode home in silence. I made my slow way
to the kitchen where Goldie was belly-up
in her tank. With the tiny net I fished her
out onto a paper towel—around her
a growing ring of water

There’s nothing you could’ve done.

Mom rubbed my arms as if to warm me.

For a long time I watched the white porcelain
fade to grey near the drain
and prayed she hadn’t landed in that place.


  1. Hi, Carrie. I love what you're doing with NaPoWriMo. In my own blog, I've been posting my poems and a buddy's but also featuring other people's poem-a-day blogs.

    May I feature your blog? Please take a look and see how I've been featuring blogs. Could you leave a comment here or in my blog yea or nay? Thanks!

  2. Hi Vince! I really appreciate you comment! And I'm thrilled that you want to feature my blog! I will warn you that I've gotten quite swamped and as you can see it's been a few days since I've posted a poem and I'm leaving town on Sat so it might get worse from there, but if you're OK with that then so am I! Otherwise, no hard feelings. I'm in a rush but I will check out your blog when I get home this evening. Thanks again! Cheers!

  3. You were ten or so?
    I was probably as old as your mum was then when I found our huge Koi carp on the lawn. A heron had battled with it and lost, but in the end the carp lost as well. It did affect me, even at that age, although I did admire its heroic attempt to stay alive.Strange how we can get so upset about a fish that cannot speak nor communicate in any way other than swimming in circles.

  4. Thank you for the comment, Aprille. Yes, I was approximately 10 when this happened. I came across a poem I had started years ago and spent a little time reworking it. It is strange how we can get emotionally attached to animals that don't necessarily return the affection. I love every creature...even insects. Be well!