THE DREAM OF FISHES
I cannot accept that dreams
are the privilege of human beings alone.
Fish also dream.
In the swampy pond, amongst miasmas
aspiring to the thickened dignity of life,
they dream with eyes always open.
Fish dream motionless, in the bliss
of fetid water. They aren’t like men, who toss
and turn in their unhappy beds. In truth,
fish are different from us, who have not yet learned to dream,
and we struggle, as if drowning, in turbid water
among hideous images and the bones of long-dead fish.
Beside the pond I ordered to be hollowed out,
making a troublesome dream of childhood come true,
I question the dark water. The tilapias hide
from my suspicious owner’s gaze
and refuse to teach me how I ought to dream.