Fish And Rice - Poem by David Taylor
Daniel phoned me today
with his usual two year old exuberance
which comes naturally when you are two
and comes naturally when you're fifty two
until you extinguish it with old damp habits,
and he said
'Fish! Fish! I like fish very much!
Daddy, fan fan, fan fan', (Chinese for rice)
and yes Daniel has already mastered
three languages, English, Mandarin and enthusiasm
the last of which he is most adept at.
Well I thought he was enjoying his fish supper
but not so, and I should have known,
this exuberance could not be the result of food
unless perhaps a rare taste
of smooth creamy chocolate.
No he was feeding fish,
fish with an appetite for rice?
No, but no one had told him the ingredients of fish food
or me for that matter
and of course he was right,
as far as the fish are concerned
this was indeed the rice of life.
And he was now suddenly very upset
standing in the corner, arms folded, despondent
what happened? I asked
I am told by my reporting wife
that there had been a message I had missed,
and should have known.
Feeding fish is more essential for happiness
than eating fish,
and on his return home, freely swimming happy fish
should be waiting for his love and bliss.
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