Arsenic Lobster poetry journal Issue Thirty-one
Spring 2013
The Smug Aquarium
Kristine Ong Muslim

Little lake, little burbling city
what were you like before you came here?

You do not have to wait long for your
rectangular hollow to be filled. We
lured the most colorful sea creatures
for you. The fish, listlessly swimming
with their luminescent dorsal fins,
scamper when you stir in your sleep.
One tap against your clear glass body,
and the sea anemones flinch. The artificial
light and air bubbles conceal your entrails,
and that unfortunate glass tubing of a throat,
which distracts us, finally keeps us in awe.
The stagnant water snags intact your droppings
and your sustenance. No one can tell where
your stomach lining was first pierced.

About Kristine Ong Muslim

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