Gerry LaFemina

Mackerel and Bottle

                       —William Scott

Not the holy mackerel of the exclamation, nor the ones caught and served by the disciples to feed five thousand. Nope. Only ordinary mackerel: two of them for the two of us waiting for the frying pan.

The wine, too, from the liquor store’s middle shelf for our middle class aspirations: a middling white, opened to breathe.

But there’s only one glass set out, for I remembered you’d gone. Thus, I’ve invited the overcast skies inside. Don’t be condescending: I haven’t been crying. That’s only condensation moist on my cheek.

Despite my prayers of intercession, my supplications for your safe return, I don’t say grace. Instead, I cook the fish whole, plate them that way, so their eyes gaze at me while I dine, desperate as I am for company.

Gerry LaFemina
’s poetry collections include The Story of Ash and Little Heretic. His essays on prosody, Palpable Magic, came out in 2015 and Kendall Hunt recently released his textbook, Composing Poetry: A Guide to Writing Poems and Thinking Lyrically. A new collection of prose poems, Baby Steps in Doomsday Prepping is forthcoming in early 2020. A Fulbright Specialist in American culture and writing, he teaches at Frostburg State University and in the Carlow University MFA Program and co-directs the Lunar Walk Reading Series in NYC.