Something Different from Either

One of us looks like the Fisher King,
the fog–moored curator of lost causes
solitary as a heron where the sky runs to salt,
a line in the water for any hope that happens by.
Our hands are cut with hooks and feathers,
the ache in our thighs
pulling like the brackish tide;
grief pearls our hair wet as a cormorant’s wing.
Then which of us can play the innocent
with a face as open as an unfilled cup—
Grail–questing, seeing the desolation
without pity or loss?
Tuck up our feet, wrap a coat tight
and watch the fishing, asking nothing
about scars:
the land is grey and tide–swirled,
not dead.
Let the wounded king tell you
how the curlews call through the mist
and take the rod from time to time,
waiting for a bite.

Sonya Taaffe

Sonya Taaffe’s short fiction and poetry can be found most recently in the collection Ghost Signs (Aqueduct Press) and in the anthologies GlitterShip Year One, Transcendent 2: The Year’s Best Transgender Speculative Fiction, and An Alphabet of Embers: An Anthology of Unclassifiables. She lives in Somerville with her husband and two cats and once named a Kuiper belt object.

Photo Credit: Rob Noyes

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