G. Louis Heath, two poems


THOUGHTS WHILE FILLETING A FISH

As the lake gulps down the sun,

I enter the shadow of my cabin,

carrying my fly rod and creel.

Clematis and rhododendron lay

down their scent in a carpet

that thrills my senses. Warblers

trill from shadows in the shrubs.

The trout on the counter dully eyes

me as I ply my fillet knife through its

pink flesh. My hopes are nourished by

this fish who gave its life for my dinner.

Yet a thought perturbs me. Is this fish’s

death an event unending?

I too grew from a kindergarten of eggs in

communion with this sleek, slick miracle of

the water. Is our end the only happening that

does not end? Or can I believe that this fillet

is a beginning?

MEN THREE INCHES TALL

colored the screen in the lounge at my residence

hall as I sat after dinner watching the news. They

stood tall in Vietnam, but in Berkeley, measured a

mere quarter-foot, a piddling three inches.

There were three-inch Vietcong and three-inch

Americans. My reality of that war is three inches

tall. There was a kind of three-inch equality of the

parties to the conflict on TV, though America

wielded the most lethality. (My Soche class

was studying inequality at the time. So,