The irony isn’t lost on me —
the sushi on my plate speaks,
how tragic. On the TV
fishermen haul, gut, chastise
albacore tuna, their blood clotting
for human livelihood
and I think about Alaska,
her blood-bright salmon
spotted from the train, from the shore,
wondering if my spawn will leave me gently
or if it will be ripped out by desperate men.
I open and close a homeless jaw
with the toe of my boot, next to a spine
tangled in the tide’s misgivings.
A salmon, bleached pink and almost no longer,
struggles upriver to breach
its final frontier.
I have that longing too,
but instead I look away and up
at the juvenile bald eagles flying
Alyssa Pearl Fusek grew up in the small mountain community of Cobb, California. She graduated in 2015 from Willamette University with a B.A. in Japanese Studies. Her work has appeared in Ghost Parachute and Noble / Gas Qtrly. She currently lives and writes in Chico, California with her partner and one cat. You can read more of her work at catandmothwritings.wordpress.com, and follow her on Twitter @japanesepearl.
Originally published in the FALL 2018 edition of The Helix.