The Actress and the Grunion

She was an actress
and even though I heard Wales in her voice
she was as American as French-fries.
I’d seen her in a play where
she bested the writing to make me laugh.
I lived two doors downhill to the ocean.
She was washing a car at the curb,
her damp roundness catching my breath.
As we talked of spawning tides she agreed to
come to my window when the time was right and
we would walk to the sea for the show.

The wet sand sucks at our feet and the ocean’s ribald tongue
licks the backs of our knees as we wait, expectancy held
like a mouthful of Pinot noir.
When they come they are millions.
Wriggling, the replace all of the water with themselves.
She gives a small cry and catches herself in my arms as the
grunion dance around our thighs in a living singing soup.
I should kiss her while the windows are
wide open and the world is perfect.
But the fish do it for us, everything, every passionate thing.
After the tide we join hands to walk back up the hill,
exhausted in their afterglow.

About Jim Stewart

Writer at Butt in Chair
This entry was posted in Poem, Reprint and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to The Actress and the Grunion

  1. laurajak says:

    Great piece. Actually grunion hunting is cold and uncomfortable and you really need some kind of chemical enhancement to make it enjoyable. Now you’ve converted the experience to a sensual dance with a much more enjoyable chemistry. I love the phrase “she bested the writing to make me laugh”. Well done. I hesitate to ask but I must – why didn’t they carry any grunion home and cook them.

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