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goldfish -- poetry by Elena Ferrari

honey-slow afternoon, trickling down my

shooting green veins, venetian canals, in death

fish float belly-up. the physics

of it evades me, eleven, my goldfish

with oxygen pearled in the rainbow swell

of its stomach, an open mouthed victim of some

gaunt house fire rippling through water.


sixteen, I listened for the murmur of asphalt

grated instead of looking for the rasp of tires, cycled,

hands off the bars, wind sweet between my teeth;

inhaling rose petals, the bitterness

cleared my tongue, and I declared it hope.

derivative twists of caterpillar-lips tore through me,

an eyes-closed fatality from sheer vastness.


I used to tap the water with the tip of my

index finger, lopping it off, and in some tongue

it was sustenance, and that stained

glass body would tremble upwards‒

opening its mouth to my fingerprint. f I lie

upside-down, strings pulling every part of me, I could be

scintillating, weightless. just tell me

I don’t need the air.



 

Elena Ferrari is a junior at Milton Academy and lives in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Her poetry has been recognized regionally and nationally by the Scholastic Art and Writing Awards and published in Cathartic Youth Literary Magazine and Magus Mabus. When not reading copious amounts of poetry, diving headfirst into physics, and writing just about anything, she can be found annoying her cat and drawing on fogged windows.

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