When in fear, hunger, or triumph
The fish breaks water for air
Protracting an arch
With its bold, writhing body
In an uncomfortable realm,
The circle is completed by him or another, in time
By a downward drive and rise
Though there is pause in the fluid line.

The wise hold incomplete arcs
as the transcendent.
They see children or the wind as completion—
A non-threat to their demise.
Cold blood in them
Runs warm in another.

The ant that crawls downward
Pulls against the rising blade of grass
That cracks the earth-surface—
An anti-gravitational urge
Unknown to itself in mind
But felt so deeply in kernel and incarnate
It must ascend or die.

The pained life presses on
Seemingly unaware of all that has diminished
So that strife and existence will be.

The marbled hand of death reaches out
Arthritic and shaking, imparting soporific solace
To the afflicted and firm alike.
“To sleep, perchance to dream. . .”
The weary thousands cease to be every day.

The unsuspecting and eager thousands
Push from the womb.
How strange a world of land must be—
How strange the mother’s voice not in utero.
The cord is cut—its helixed flesh now fallen.
There is a scream.
The last birth push is ended.
The young one now must breathe.
Still, the coiled fish existence never leaves.
A strange remembering drives all coast-ward
We are of flesh and sea.