Monday, April 4, 2011

A Fishing Poet: Greg Keeler

The Glass Trout

It lies over the rock 
Or at least its shadow does.
It turns to feed.
Or at least its refraction does. 

Here is a bright window 
on a world where
everything is clear 
until it moves
and everything moves.

A nose breaks the surface 
in a circle small as 
a bracelet for a slender wrist
but the shadow beneath 
cannot even hide behind a boulder
so it moves up and back
under the hatch.

It is a rock
then a week bed
then a sunstruck wave.

Then it arches out into
 this world
where everything stops. 

This poem appeals to me not only because it describes trout in a way that is accurate to my experience, but because it also is so deeply interested in vision--in seeing through and seeing past.

It is from the book American Falls. The poet is Greg Keeler. If you know his voice, it is impossible not to hear these words as he would say them.  (The book was recently republished by Confluence Press. According to World Cat, the book is held in 22 libraries, so that avenue exists, too.)

One last thing, he is a pretty fine teacher of poetry. (And I might have boogered up some of his line breaks when I put that picture in there. My bad. Line breaks matter.)
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