I wish to say

 
          I wish to say that I resent
          the way my life becomes
          a muddling of circling
          a circling of muddling
          a circle of muddles
          in a muddle of circles
          
          I wish to say it
          and now I have said it
          kind of
          
          and I feel a bit better
          indeed rather forgiving
          for now.
 
 
 

Shark Fate

 
          Curving through the currents undistracted
          with tailfin half as long as its body
          it watches for those whose luck has been absurd

          but the sea is vast and I paddle softly
          so it seems quite possible the Thresher will miss me
          quite probable even in the mapless blue-black floods

          provided I paddle ever softly without splashes
          not too close to any school of obvious meatfish
          who have not even imagined the strange long tailfin

          which suddenly (the books say) whips the water
          till life is nothing but panic–oh let me never know
          that monstrous slapping and the razor teeth

          though my good luck has been absurd and I know it
          I say I know it I keep saying I know it
          but softly lest that long finned force take an interest

          and with absolute concentration move to teach me
          what must come of being lucky but weak in the blue-black floods.
          
          
          
          
          

Mark Halliday

MARK HALLIDAY's sixth book of poems Thresherphobe was published by the University of Chicago Press and is reviewed in the 2013 winter issue. He teaches at Ohio University. His poems have appeared on this site here and here.

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