Fish out of Water

Fish out of Water

A Poem by Nautili

This is not about a single person but a composite of betrayals, some small and some major in my life.

Fish Out of Water
Smack down, 
face to the ground.
Not a single sound,
but my gasps for air.
(Mama always warned me that life
is neither kind or fair.)

"Let me be dreaming, please,"
I whisper as I crawl to my knees.
I look up into your beautiful, inscrutable face.
Your make-up is so perfectly in place.
Not a frown or eyes full of tears,
As you nonchalantly reveal
unfathomable fears.

A shapeshifter has stolen my closest friend.
A fiendish fishwife stands now
in her stead.
All my vulnerabilities expertly flayed 
by your acutely keen blade.
Our bond mutating, then morphing
into a stunningly sophisticated charade.

My outsides are stripped naked.
My insides eviscerated; 
laying open, exposed.
My heart is barely beating,
and swiftly turning cold.

Trust lie like viscera, discarded in the trash.
Warm memories are now
Pestering phantoms of the past.
Scales removed, and now I can see
cold, blank eyes staring back at me.

Is this a sign that I am weak, 
That you just knelt to kiss my cheek?
Is this a sign that you are strong,
That you are oblivious to your wrong?

The Three Sisters  are watching you as you sleep,
each eager to place a cool kiss  
upon your warm and blushing cheek.
For it is universally incumbent
that you reap your comeuppance.
For fate has a way, my old friend,
(sometimes soon, sometimes at the end)
of giving in far greater measure
what was given with cruel pleasure.


© 2016 Nautili

Author's Note

Fish Analogy-perfectly encapsulated that gutted feeling.
fishwife- " a woman who sells fish" " a vulgar abusive woman" " urban dictionary"-a woman who collects other people's gossip and spreads it around to all and to sundry groups."
Three Sisters- The Fates in Greek Mythology, they gave 3 x worse the sense of betrayal with each kiss on her cheek.
Blushing Cheek- referring to the humiliations to come.
Cold/Warm references-This is a juxtaposition of the warmth of life with the coldness of betrayal

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Karma maybe slow sometimes but it always catches up with those who betray others for a living.

Posted 4 Years Ago


4 Years Ago

I think many people rely on karma to exact their revenge!!! I think it is a universal principle of s.. read more
This is a very beautiful piece of poetry that captures the feelings of confusion and misery that come with being betrayed by a friend. This work brings memories to everyone's minds of times they were mistreated or hurt by someone, whether it is a close friend of not. I like all the different references you make, such as fishwife and the Three Sisters. Good job overall, I hope to see more writing from you. :)

Posted 4 Years Ago


4 Years Ago

Thank you so much.
Click on the picture I found on Deviantart,com. It is called "Fishwife" by Chrissie Cool. Perfect because she looks like anything but a fishwife! It could also represent myself descending the stairs on the severed parts of the fish (betrayal) to transcendence.

Posted 4 Years Ago

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3 Reviews
Added on December 7, 2016
Last Updated on December 9, 2016




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