Iowa Writes

The Most Ferocious Freshwater Fish

The piranhas like their appetizers plain—
A scent of blood, a frantic human splash.
A school of fish will gravitate to pain
And turn the naked body into hash.

They race for food, and gobble up their meals:
The make a dietitian shake her head.
Of course, one is distracted by the squeals
When making a nutrition pyramid.

They pick bones clean, with single minded ease;
And in this sense they are easy to please.
No fancy food, just flesh and flowing blood:
And these ferocious fish will call it good.
Like diners who've survived the Great Depression,
The piranhas eat with little hesitation.

About Iowa Writes

Since 2006, Iowa Writes has featured the work of Iowa-identified writers (whether they have Iowa roots or live here now) and work published by Iowa journals and publishers on The Daily Palette. Iowa Writes features poetry, fiction, or nonfiction twice a week on the Palette.

In November of 2008, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) designated Iowa City, Iowa, the world's third City of Literature, making the community part of the UNESCO Creative Cities Network.

Iowa City has joined Edinburgh, Scotland and Melbourne, Australia as UNESCO Cities of Literature.

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Kim Bridgford is a professor of English at Fairfield University, where she edits Dogwood and Mezzo Cammin. Her third book of poetry, In the Extreme: Sonnets About World Records, recently won the Donald Justice Poetry Award and will be published by the West Chester University Poetry Center in spring 2007.

This page was first displayed
on April 30, 2006

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