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keith harmon snow
bout the greatwhitefish i seen
the wet freezingcold and we,
all bodymuffled in rubbersuits and leadsinkers,
and you couldnofseen
not a bodylong in
It was murkysea,
notsodeeps off New England, Plum Island's aquagreen
my thenbestfriends and i were flyingfast in crosswaves and tidecurrents and skimming the bottomsand and rockyledges to feed our lobbsterlove.
It was a sunshinybeach and even at tenmeters there were sparklebeams and sunrays bendtwisting in the saltysurf, casting blackshadows into the fluidforms and floatingwaves.
then everylife shuddered in dark omenmoments as this apparition about fivemeterslong skulked ontopabove us and circledthere in hungersearch and bloodsniffing and predatorlife.
it was the veryfirst divewhere i could say i saw terrorbloom in my heartspace and share there its blackmessage of impermanence and nothingness and beinggonenow.
my bestfriends rafandpetey were grippedinheart too. timestopped and spacesquishedup and even our lobsterlove slipped into the sharkabyss. even the crustaceanlife seemed to sense the sharkcoming and tookitschance to runaway from our netbagfull.
I think no one breathed then in
the greatwhite bloodsniffed on like an omencloud and after we snorted our collectivefear it comedagain nosediving and snackthinking and redgillbreathing it finflippered straight at us like a slinkingcat might fly.
no like a submarine of coldsteel and rivetbolts'it was that bigandround and barrelchested with sliverfins'and we never saw an eyelooking'thank the goddess we never saw its eyeslooking'and if i had i would have spit out my airgadget and screamedwater ifn'tnot floated deadman right thenandthere and bellyup and been devoured unstruggling like easybait.
and the great white in our fearfulhope and deadmans prayers disappeared ghostlylike and sullenly.
with sharkforbrains we fled flipperfast and lobsternetdragging into the breakwater and we scurried ashore pantsnorting on saltwaterlaughs and chokingtears and blubbershouts of our newfoundluck'but it was nerveracked and indecipherable and terrorlaughing'and after a few wavebreaks we said nothingnomore til we got homesafe.
we celebrated our luckliving with butterlobbies and crabcakes and profoundspaces of silentthinking and eyemeetings.
i always say i hope i go that way.
eaten by sharkhunger or crocjawcrushing or teethy neckbreaking lionslaughter.
not in no oldfolkshome.
and so if you happensee
I hope youll pleasebesure
thats how i finishbe.
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© keith is an INDEPENDENT freelance journalist and investigator entirely dependent on individual donations and voluntary contributions. He has lived under the poverty line for over a decade, and he has continues to work as a volunteer for three non-profit humanitarian organizations. Without your support, he cannot continue to do this important and insightful work.
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