Poems about Fishing

I wrote a poem. Well, some poems.

The old line “there’s plenty more fish in the sea” apparently bugs me a lot. I first wrote a short poem about it back in November 2012, thought it was pretty okay, and then earmarked it for a long-delayed fanzine, so it hasn’t really been seen much. (I then checked this website and realised it’s been here all this time, but I still consider it unshared up till now.)

Then I unwittingly harped on the theme in a poem I wrote this February, which I put up on World Poetry Day (March 21st). I think there’s something here, but I wouldn’t call it done. I put it up because…

…I figured I should either make it a trilogy/three-part poem/triumvirate on a theme/whatever, or a massive In Memoriam-style treatise on how much this one phrase bugs me, or stick my fingers in my ears and pretend I’m not a moron who keeps writing the same poems. I went for the first option this week, and so here they all are:


They tell me
‘There are plenty more fish in the sea’
As I sit here on the dock
Line drawn, hook baited
Still waiting for a bite.

There are other fish in the sea
but she’s a mermaid, a myth
that sings to me. Her love song
draws me near, across the ocean,
but my ship is repelled by
rocks and waves and winds
and I am beaten from her cove
into a still, silent sea.

Fellow sailors call it an escape,
a reprieve from the ocean’s floor,
and yet I long to sail again,
to destroy myself in her waters.
To me, it is still, silent sea
that holds my true death.

There are plenty of fish, they say,
as if women are just fish, caught and
consumed, dumb and identikit,
like my need’s indiscriminate.

And yet I am no fisherman.
I am Ahab, I sail the seas
searching only for one. My catch
is precise, and she is no fish.