(not a) river monster

At The Harbor by Judith Clay

I found him at the market.

A rare turquoise troute.

At the harbor he gasped

for the water,  instead

breathing in death air.


I found him at the market.

I named him Jeremy Wade.

At the harbor I held him

and we went to the water,

finding life for he and I.


I found him at the market.

I found in saving him I

saved myself as well.

One gasping fish away

from an empty sea

and death for us all.


I found him at the market.

We danced to the shore

past the wharf and ships.

Past the fishermen’s laugh.

Straight to freedom.

Into the water he dove.


i wait there at Pier 3 for him.

He comes for the sunshine

and berries bright. I come

for his shining freedom

and a single turquoise

scale adorns my throat.


In freeing the fish I found

a way to free myself.

From the nets of expectations.

From the hooks and bait.

I saved him but in truth

he did more to save me.


Playing along at dVerse with the whimsical and lovely artwork of Judith Clay. Come by to read some poetry and enjoy some art!  And yes I admire the River Monsters host Jeremy Wade.  He is very dedicated to not only understanding river monsters but in saving our rivers, streams and lakes which will, in turn, save us all.




  1. claudia said,

    August 25, 2013 at 6:42 pm

    oh nice..i much like the freeing yourself by freeing him… haven’t heard of jeremy wade yet but will def. look him up…cool take

  2. brian miller said,

    August 25, 2013 at 6:58 pm

    very cool…in freeing him you found a bit of freedom yourself and keep one scale on the neck to remember him by…very cool take shanyn….

  3. Waltermarks said,

    August 25, 2013 at 7:26 pm

    You can’t take a fish too far from the water. And you can’t breathe the air.

  4. August 25, 2013 at 7:40 pm

    Oh this is true freedom… your are free only if you free someone else… this is so lovely… perfect sentiment.

  5. Mary said,

    August 25, 2013 at 9:13 pm

    Nice….sometimes in life it IS hard to know just who is the one doing the saving!!

  6. Grace said,

    August 25, 2013 at 10:38 pm

    Love the turn of the magical fish…in saving someone else, we do save ourselves ~ Very meaningful write ~

  7. Misky said,

    August 27, 2013 at 9:42 am

    A lovely poem of freedom and perspective. I also love that you named your fish!


  8. Gabriella said,

    August 27, 2013 at 7:24 pm

    I enjoyed your poem: a nice tale of reciprocal rescue.

  9. August 27, 2013 at 7:29 pm

    There is so much beauty in this, Shanyns, and the freedom of letting go. I don’t know if you ever read the poem “The Fish” (was it Elizabeth Bishops?) A long poem about catching a fish, admiring it and then letting it go. Well I heard in a class this week that she confessed she actually took it home and ate it. :0(

    • shanyns said,

      August 27, 2013 at 7:49 pm

      Oh boo. I am very much a “catch & release” angler. Thanks for coming by
      Glad you enjoyed it.

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