Brittany Fonte

Brittany Fonte holds an MFA in Creative Writing (fiction). Her work, both fiction and prose poetry, can be found in journals such as Literary Mama, Breadcrumb Scabs, The Wrong Tree Review, and many more. She published a chapbook of prose poetry with Silkworms Ink (UK) recently, and has been working as an assistant editor for Lowbrow Press, a poetry press, when not teaching university Composition or Fiction and Non-Fiction.

A Seaworthy Epiphany

It starts within a sentimental snow globe from a trip to Gloucester, Massachusetts (honeymoon). See: the weather is too cold for swimming and the blueberries have begged off for same-sex sleep. It starts with a solid principle that rallies all “lower” beings to higher good in polished glass: Let the lobsters go. (Commence shaking.) “That’ll be $24.95,” in the land of abolition and apple tea and picturesque precipitation—warm. This is a gift; I pack it, rolled in stolen, transformative towels, and move to lift off.

On tempest tides, through plastic peepholes and Reuters’ mobiles, we seek these monks and nuns. Inside my suitcase, that holy water splashes in caving, curving walls—Americans playing at lama compassion in a world where welfare is considered a crime and leftovers are thrown out rather than levied for next life karma. Half-full of weighty intentions, we fly, transparent, out in the handmade whirlwinds of Eastern eggshell snow. Their feet are blessed in glitter; they collect intangible cash, and cod. We order a vodka and cranberry.

Their bland and open faces are covered in scarves to save themselves the need to stay stone-faced while pleading the lobster case; their hands are suited in fisherman gloves, but they will never feed a town with just one fish, or take the time to use a Garten recipe, however easy. Instead, they solicit help from strangers who may or may not have ever eaten figs. They wheedle collections in weekday begging bowls for Wheel Turning Day, pat the bottom feeder who may have been our mother, our wife, in another, distant, life.

Beyond the theatrical and cylindrical world of perfect people/nature pairs protected in patent leather luggage and passion-stained cotton, we buy six hundred pounds of not-yet-red-crustaceans on ebay: PayPal. We keep our trans-Atlantic butter cold, save small (faux) forks for root vegetables and root for the under-seas, vicarious. (They unclip one claw and allow them to swim, freewheeling, wire-less.) The principle: We let the lobsters go to save them from us. But who saves the fish? (Turbulence threatens this tiny world, trapped.)

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