Newman died today. And I did not implode nor explode. I did not submit to impulses irregular nor aberrant. He is a fish. Nothing more, nothing less.
Nothing more, nothing less?
A fish is more than just a fish.
Who, at the fish houses, caught a tremendous fish.
A tremendous fish!
…How can a fish be tremendous?
How can this assail my circumstance?
1. We identify with the living.
I see his gills breathing. I mind my breathe.
This afternoon, I see him motionless
at the bottom of the tank,
and think of certain—
2. We are responsible.
I had been on vacation and let his tank become muddied. Yesterday, I hastily cleaned and filled it with tap water, neglecting the chlorine filter…
3. It reflects our care.
If I had only maintained his water…
my poor, defenseless babe–I mean, fish!
Needless to say,
a fish more than just a…
This night, for instance,
I bought food at the grocery store with more care,
of what to name my new Beta…
– – – – –
R.I.P. Newman (? – 7/20/2010)
See also: “Your Dog Dies,” a poem by Raymond Carver http://www.zverina.com/bestbooks/poem-online-yourdogdies.htm