• John Zedolik

Icthys

by John Zedolik

Pontius’s hands, which he dipped in the basin’s water

must have been pale as the ivory of Pheidias’s Zeus in its dim temple-box,

veinless like a languid limb of Aphrodite lost in a Aegean wreck—

so fish swimming for a moment to splash in the shallow bronze that would not reflect his face,

for otherwise he might have known himself, as Apollo’s oracle at Delphi advised, pagan-wise,

seen his sallow fins, flabby in the flash of liquid habitat, that does not admit a rigid

row of bones necessary to make the straight decision and determined trace

on the dry land sometimes parched, without spirit or rain, to unforgiving rock, adamant terrain.

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