Lisel Mueller

(February 8, 1924)

Moon Fishing - Poem by Lisel Mueller

When the moon was full they came to the water.
some with pitchforks, some with rakes,
some with sieves and ladles,
and one with a silver cup.

And they fished til a traveler passed them and said,
to catch the moon you must let your women
spread their hair on the water --
even the wily moon will leap to that bobbing
net of shimmering threads,
gasp and flop till its silver scales
lie black and still at your feet."

And they fished with the hair of their women
till a traveler passed them and said,
do you think the moon is caught lightly,
with glitter and silk threads?
You must cut out your hearts and bait your hooks
with those dark animals;
what matter you lose your hearts to reel in your dream?"

And they fished with their tight, hot hearts
till a traveler passed them and said,
what good is the moon to a heartless man?
Put back your hearts and get on your knees
and drink as you never have,
until your throats are coated with silver
and your voices ring like bells."

And they fished with their lips and tongues
until the water was gone
and the moon had slipped away
in the soft, bottomless mud.

Comments about Moon Fishing by Lisel Mueller

  • Paresh Chakra (11/29/2018 3:27:00 AM)

    It is a very wonderful poem 10++++++++ (Report) Reply

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  • (2/20/2018 11:04:00 PM)

    Such an imaginative and romantic poem! (Report) Reply

  • Savita Tyagi (2/20/2018 9:17:00 PM)

    Lovely poem. Moon creates fascinating imaginations. One of the best is this one. Catching moon with a woman’s silken hair is most romantic. (Report) Reply

  • Ashika Murali Acharya (2/20/2018 5:25:00 PM)

    Finest piece of imaginative writing. Beautiful. (Report) Reply

  • Muzahidul Reza (2/20/2018 10:00:00 AM)

    And they fished with their lips and tongues
    until the water was gone
    and the moon had slipped away
    in the soft, bottomless mud., wonderful wirte
    (Report) Reply

  • (2/20/2018 9:13:00 AM)

    great....full of imagery, word paintings of the people fishing to catch the moon....actually to have one heart to enjoy the moon...a nature poem truly. (Report) Reply

  • Kumarmani Mahakul (2/20/2018 9:08:00 AM)

    Well imaginative write. Congratulatuon for P.O.D (Report) Reply

  • Edward Kofi Louis (2/20/2018 8:48:00 AM)

    Slipped away! ! Thanks for sharing this poem with us. (Report) Reply

  • Paul Brookes (2/20/2018 3:26:00 AM)

    I love this retelling of the moon raker great piece enjoyed thanks (Report) Reply

  • Bernard F. Asuncion (2/20/2018 1:34:00 AM)

    Such a great poem by Lisel Mieller👍👍👍 (Report) Reply

  • Glen Kappy (12/18/2016 8:45:00 AM)

    Moon Fishing
    i wonder what mueller had in mind when she wrote this. what it makes me think of is the aching feeling to possess someone of something which always eludes us because it's not possible. oneness comes by other means- it's a gift. -glen kappy (Report) Reply

  • (5/28/2015 9:01:00 PM)

    Borrows from the Grimm story about the farmer who bore his ass (Esel) to market and learned you can't be everything to everyone. It has the admirable Grimm sang-froid, aplenty. Frankly, I see nothing light-hearted about it- just good, concrete imagery and plenty of narrative. (Report) Reply

  • Kim Barney (5/28/2015 3:02:00 PM)

    Creative and lighthearted fun. Enjoyed reading this one. (Report) Reply

  • Savita Tyagi (5/28/2015 9:32:00 AM)

    Great imagination! Loved reading this beautiful poem full of humor and satire! (Report) Reply

  • (5/17/2014 5:39:00 PM)

    So wonderfully creative! Imagination at it's finest! A new favorite poet have I! ! ! (Report) Reply

  • Brian Jani (5/17/2014 2:55:00 PM)

    Lisel A beautifully written poem. Keep it up (Report) Reply

  • Alufa Oke Joshua (5/8/2014 6:18:00 AM)

    another great work of art! ! ! ! ! (Report) Reply

  • (10/3/2009 6:29:00 PM)

    oh what a magical poem to discover by the light of the harvest moon
    - hearts as dark animals - voices ringing like bells - moon fishing casts a spell x
    (Report) Reply

  • (9/1/2005 2:09:00 PM)

    You have such a great imagination Lisel. The lesson I take from this is 'Don't listen to what everybody else has to say'. Very nice poem. Sincerely, Mary (Report) Reply

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Read poems about / on: moon, silver, women, water, hair, fishing, dream, dark, fish, animal, woman, lost

Poem Submitted: Monday, January 13, 2003

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