marlin

by Steven J. Serafiani

the old man on
the boardwalk is a wreck. he’s shouting
to himself, shouts, “tourists go
home!” even though

all the tourists have gone home; into
beds with familiar dead skin pillows
and deadbolt dreams. he lights up and

sits in the sand. he cries, cries as we
all do, with hunched shoulder and
unpolished tense up. his head bobbin

up and down, no marlin no
more. never was a marlin on
the end. the tourists up in the new york, they
straighten their family marlin frame.

maybe he was a painter, not the four wall kind
but the four corner kind. dog at feet as he
brushed anonymity in New England. Maybe

he was a pinter and a fighter. bruised
his knuckle brawlin some portrait in
dive: Lubbock. “go home tourists!” he
continues. the ocean

mirrored salt lap. went up, patted his

shoulder. “soon.”

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