by Richard Fein
Fish in the air, a roomful of busy jaws
and one humongous fish tank at Ling’s South China Sea Restaurant
A vista filled with unsated appetites.
Fish engulfing human faces, human faces engulfing fish.
An illusion created by my particular perspective,
standing where I am, standing between the front door
and the giant fish tank greeting all hungry diners
before they venture beyond the artificial sea into the capacious dining room.
Four hundred million years of competing hungers evolved into this strange juxtaposition,
here at Ling’s, here through Ling=s colossal aquarium so distant from the South China Sea.
But I didn’t come here for a proper perspective,
or to see refracted light pass through the windows of two worlds,
a fish tank full of Devonian spawn and a chicken-chow-mein restaurant−−
one a metaphor for long ago and the other the literal for here and now
and the eons in between.
No, I came here not to ponder the eons but to eat
the specialty of the house which is. . ..
Pass the tartar sauce.