Donna Vorreyer

Silent screams, your two arms turned

to the eight of an octopus coiled

around my struggling chest, but not.

This is mental, not skin on skin,

simply neurons firing in the fishbowl skull,

carnival guppies frantic then expiring at will.

We smile and float, paint on clown fish stares,

cartoon round, as the watchers tap the glass

until we crack, prepared to gasp for air

but not. Remember. This is all in my head,

a dream or some other mystic fish that slips

its school and makes its way upstream.

Fog. Mist. Remnants of old arguments crust

the sides of the tank with algae, and I am

convinced that I will never remember

until I do. I drag my gloved hand

across the glass to clear it – suddenly,

a visible swath of stars.

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