Last night I went to a beach with a tidal river, and it swelled the sandy banks with its pristine water. There was a museum with ancient Greek statues, half eroded in pure chalky white marble. I looked through glass into the immediate depths of the river, wondering if it was dangerously cold. The water was perfect; you could see every grain of sand in place at the bottom. And then the glass was gone and the river was allowed to wash in lovingly around the statues, brush its foam against their pedestals. It was all part of a dynamic exhibit that included the tidal river acting as a sensual element, how it contributed to additional sculpting—a subtle type of erasure. There was also a shop where items were displayed. These items were mostly rusted iron figurines that were buried in the sand for thousands of years, uncovered by the river’s washing in and washing out and discovered by people walking the banks. I made a choice, some rusted relic with wings, and brought it to the cashier. She rang it up and charged me $4. She put it in a sturdy paper bag and handed it to me. I went out to go sit on the bank, but by now the river was swelling in full and people who were sunbathing had to leave. There was no room; if you were going to stay, you had to swim. I looked out at the night sky stealing in, a dark slate, how it contrasted with the white foam of the rushing tide and I felt pure fear. I was alone.
Supernatural Fish Bones
I had become distinctly aware of something floating just above me on the right side of the bed. It was a fish, but this fish had no scales, no flesh. Its bones were radiant and its eyes glowed. It hovered above me in a lime-green hue, fluorescent, flapping its tail gleefully. It lit up the dark. And just when I reached to grab it, I slipped back through the portal of consciousness. My immediate feeling was terror, because I had realized then that I had been with something unworldly. Why is my first feeling always fear? Would not a supernatural fish be intriguing? Wouldn’t this be a particular remedy to a day-to-day life that chisels away continuously at imagination? Am I not constantly yearning for imagination?
Last week, on an abnormally warm day, I took the twins to the dentist. As I sat there watching them lay back in their silly sunglasses getting their teeth cleaned, I noticed a large empty fish bowl on a shelf. It was wonderfully round and elegant. Before they were put in their chairs, the kids were asking for the fish, where were they? Where was the tank? They had to be told several times that the fish tank was being repaired. The fish were unavailable at the moment. This was very disappointing to my kids. Marielle pointed out the empty fish bowl on the shelf, and that's when I put to mind the exquisite curvature of the bowl. The fish bowl reappeared in my dream a following night, and inside it was a fat yellow-bellied fish. This fish was female, and it floated vertically in the water with its lips puckered at the lip of the water. I placed my lips on top of its lips. What a delicate thing to do! And then suddenly there was a marring of the water in the tank; there was a dust plume floating beside the vertical kissing fish. Or was the dust plume a placenta? There was no baby. I attempted to get the fish out of the dirty water into clean water without letting in the dust plume placenta; this was arduous and I nearly gave up. I finally succeeded in placing the fish in a two-part tank in which she could slide over a small plastic bridge and into a second body of water. I thought this could be an interesting activity for her, to keep her from getting bored. And then suddenly, as if it was spontaneously generated, a carp appeared in the tank. The carp was a brilliant vermilion color and could jump from one side to the other. I thought the yellow-bellied fish could learn from the carp, how to jump and live a more exciting life. But the carp wasn’t happy jumping from one part, over the bridge, to the other part. The carp leapt out of the tank entirely and landed on the carpet, twitching. I fetched it, and he flopped in my hands. I put him back in the tank and then he flipped back out again.
Some creatures, some ideas, some people are simply wild and must come and go as they please.