Published 6:30, Aug. 2, 2023

My first time fishing, I flung the seizure
back into the water after my terrible thread
and needle wove through its silver cheek.
I knew I would become a murderer
the moment I hesitated, stunned by the aim
of its serrated glimmer. Stranger, I should have

split you jaw to iridescent junction,
reaped mercy. Were you, too,
a child, your current parallel to mine?
Or were you on your way home, finally,
after all these years of enduring the cold alone?

Minute hand dammed, that hour
echoes between my ears, and you, baffled, appeal
to my ankles each time I slip into the cool silk
of the lake. And when I return at the end
of another unremarkable evening,

out of the kitchen sink your bright eyes cut—
a body of two heavy halves.


Farah Ghafoor
Farah Ghafoor is an award-winning poet whose debut poetry collection, Shadow Price, is forthcoming in spring 2025.