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Flat Fishing at Sachem Head

by William F Dougherty

The heron stands on stilts, I stand on dock,
to fish the wrinkled cove; he stalks the tide
and stabs up fingerlings. Waves slosh and slide
against a reef of rubber-braided rock
that lifts its rockweed skirts like wading girls.
A flatfish snaps his picket-teeth and scares
a shoal of minnows, caught unawares;
they boil this way and that in silver swirls.

I cast my line to snag his angry jaw.
The heron stares and sticks to his design;
minnows forget their momentary awe
at bottom-feeding fate. I won't resign
to flatfish death, and he will not withdraw
until he owns the cove. I sniff the brine.


Posted on 06/14/2012
Copyright © 2021 William F Dougherty

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