a viking funeral for my goldfish by sarah pinter
A Viking Funeral for My Goldfish
Like Odin caressing the infant world
His fins, reaching from horizon to horizon,
Owned all that they touched.
Inch by inch he conquered infinity,
Each degree of the glass orb, each shivering
Molecule of water, and he bore the runes
Of his myth on his scales. When Valhalla called
He should have a Viking funeral, I thought,
Thin column of smoke rising from his
Dwarf longship, though his wet body,
Like a holy relic, might refuse to burn.
Naturally, one pale morning
He went flaccid near the lip of the bowl.
His eyes had always held blankness, but the
Ghostly milk of his scales haunted me.
How long had this second face lain latent?
Shuddering, I spun his fleeting heroism
Down to oblivion. No ceremony else.
No monument left behind but a few
Loose scales in churning water.