Catching The Dalmatian
Just before he wakes up he reaches
for another jumbo shrimp. The cooler,
nearly depleted, is a mix of slushy bait
and warming beer. He snags one or
the other –he can’t remember which—
and wishes the odd lights at the bottom
of the dark pool weren’t so…what?
Hypnotic? Inviting? He sips his beer,
stabs another jumbo on the barbed
hook, flicks his ash and, with a flick
of wrist, casts the weighted bait.
A plop and a wait. Half in the bag,
it’s hard to tell how long it takes
to finally sink to the bottom.
He’s had better days, he thinks;
he’d like to think that better days
are still ahead, but the bottom
of the pool beckons. A sudden tug.
He jerks the rod to set the hook.
His head reels; “Dogfish,” he thinks,
“Or something worse,” and cuts it
loose. He lights another smoke,
reaches for another beer, sits and
watches the neighbor’s spotted dog
take a dump on his August lawn.