Spring/Fall 2020

The Favorite Fish is the Dead Fish

By Gary Glauber

It’s a language unto itself,
expressed in green crayon
to flaunt the idea of genius
doing whatever it wants.

Possibilities are fluid,
like a serious man’s puppet show,
or perhaps that’s just his way
of surrendering to this world’s
unreasonable controversy.

No asylum exists,
so he hides in plain sight:
on air, on line, on the big screen,
and lets puppets do all
the heavy lifting.

Real in its scary simplicity,
the message is pleasant enough
until you consider the backstory
of the spoiled boy’s latent backlash
at an unforgiving populace.
Then it’s just another
ordinary cry for help.

This staid patron saint of
love as boredom wants to
live next door, convince you
of your unique importance,
offer you trophies for participation,
for breathing, for life itself.

The angry world
rejects the meek messages
of strange complacence,
of even-tempered intrusion.

Animals understand,
yet the important fish
still lies on the bottom
of the busy tank,
dead to the possibility,
transformed into
this week’s lesson.
A shallow grave for
the formerly sentimental,
something we can talk out
over time, bury until talk fails us,
until failing is called success.

When entropy
takes over as beautiful day
and neighborhood is revealed
as alternate universe,
it’s a temperate surprise,
an unheralded alternate
unexpected zombie apocalypse.

The call of the mild
invades our very souls
until we float on,
belly up and staring out
into the watery void:
silenced forever,

Gary Glauber

Gary Glauber is a poet, fiction writer, teacher, and former music journalist. His widely published works have received multiple Pushcart Prize and Best of the Net nominations. He has had over 400 poems published in a wide variety of literary journals, magazines, and anthologies. His two collections, Small Consolations (Aldrich Press) and Worth the Candle (Five Oaks Press), and a chapbook, Memory Marries Desire (Finishing Line Press), are available through Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and directly from the publishers. He currently is readying his most recent collection for publication.

View the website of Gary Glauber

Spring/Fall 2020