at the White River, I see
a little girl cast out
a silver line--
her mind reeling,
anxious for a bite.

What I see is lightning,
arching like the line;
twinkling strikes in her eyes;
a billion bolts leaping;
simple as salmon; terror-eyed and cool.

Each strike is one word:
Soul. And
what of it?
When the fish are all caught,
the wet grey meat consumed,
What of the soul?

She does; she is
Nibble like the fish; nimble like the bolt.

I wonder, too,
when the knuckles bend and cannot
hold the line,
and when the mind whispers--all catch and release,
 and when the ghost dusts off the crust of the eye
and, stretching, severs the lightning shackles--
for freedom!--
then what of the soul?

© 2016 Petty Torture Productions