Forest Fire

Goldfinches Near Cooper Marsh

Beer and Rock Bass


The Creek Behind My House

The Game


En Route à Montréal/The Flowering Crab

Siamese Fighting Fish/Distant Carp

In Open Air

First Unmelting Flake


Remembered Moose

About the Poet


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Friday Circle Home

Near Cooper Marsh

by Jesse P. Ferguson

Beer and Rock Bass

men and beer bottles
held sweating contests
the German Shepherd
patient as a mantis
poised to snatch a fallen fish head

as I, on cedar planks
pined for the blue
of neighbour’s pool

we cleaned perch, some bass

fillet-knives too long for boys
severed flesh
as I cranked
the skinning machine
fish shivering
at first touch of steel
like us when the pools first opened

once, I wormed my finger
into the peapod rib cage
of a rock bass, so deep
that when I retrieved it
autumn had come
and I, ages older, was left to think
of guts rotting in the backfield

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Copyright © 2006 by Jesse P. Ferguson
Electronic edition, 2006. ISBN 1-896362-40-0
Print edition forthcoming. ISBN 1-896362-41-9