Before the Christian Fish was caught marshes flourished, wild game gamboled in the bracken, cornfields, melons, apple and apricot orchards were lovingly tended--then Ichthyos was hoisted, staring down at malignant ponds praying to be spawned.

A garden is an island, a fish-baiting man is a man-eating fish, a deep hole a quarry filled to the brim with spirited tides of hierophanies or acres of pits and underground mines, earth turned inside out, hauled up, refined.

Caught in the combers of a May wind, arching fishtails celebrate boys who survived the edges of growing up to this point hooked to a post, anguished fins beating against invisible currents, with baskets and bulging eyes.

What's become of
History's carping voices?
Bone dry.

We drink the ruins as if elixir whispering to children in Mother's cloaked lap, adding stories to stories, ancestral remains flower from the depths, a discrete blooming drowned in devotions deeper than ourselves, this world keeps bobbing up groundless, each sallow corpse replacing its elder.