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Rainbow, Brown and Brookie


Rainbow, Brown and Brookie (Last Stanza Poetry Review, 2021)


They are living rubies, emeralds, sapphires,
and opals, rolled into one, sliding through
a cold riffle, holding where the
insects drift downstream –
easy prey, just a quick snap.

Years stretch like too old elastic,
and I have tired of them, baked, or
wine-poached, sautéed in yellow
butter, decades of slick plates and
twisted skeletons, fleshless on
the communal bone china plate.
The scent of scales and crisp
skin wafting into the dining
room from our sun-colored kitchen.

So I bought a smoker.

That left flesh amber, yet firm,
apricot-tinged, flinty, and
dry as Sancerre in July.


Every one I catch, I swear
“the next one will go free”.