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The Fish

Rating: 3.5

I caught a tremendous fish
and held him beside the boat
half out of water, with my hook
fast in a corner of his mouth.
He didn't fight.
He hadn't fought at all.
He hung a grunting weight,
battered and venerable
and homely. Here and there
his brown skin hung in strips

like ancient wallpaper,
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COMMENTS OF THE POEM
Sean Liao 15 April 2010

Elizabeth Bishop is renown to write poetry about the beauty of poetry. This poem is not an exception. The fisherman merely caught a fish, yet by his imagination and creativity(which is part of poetry) he was able to imagine the fish beyond what it was, not only talking about its skin but also about its innards and portraying it as a war veteran. In fact, the ending spoke of how the fisherman even began to see the colors of the rainbow. Sad to say, the poem focuses more on poetry itself; it is unlikely the poem is speaking of morality or life and death between the fisherman and the fish. Great poem!

106 75 Reply
M Asim Nehal 01 August 2016

Very well said.

0 0 Reply
Lee Moore 28 January 2009

I'm not an 'expert' when it comes to poetry but this one captures SO much! This is not about this 'poor ole fish'. This is about both of them and the struggle of life; hope, triumph, surrender and love. Exquisite!

75 73 Reply
Paul Butters 01 March 2008

Simply one of my favourite poems ever. Beautiful imagery. Glad she let go.

67 73 Reply
Serique Gil 05 July 2009

Totally amazing. Beyond any fishing experience! ! ! real poem! much more of what you see

66 74 Reply
Flanos 10 September 2021

Perfectly balanced as all things should be.

0 0 Reply
dumb 10 August 2021

dumb

0 0 Reply
Canteloupe Matthew 03 December 2020

I love the fish! graceful creature. meatball

1 1 Reply
OHfjwpf 17 November 2020

this man why do I have to read this?

2 1 Reply
elizabETTHHHH 11 September 2020

THIS IS DUMB WHY AM I HAVIUNG TIO READ THIS UDMB DUMB DUMB FISHHHH

4 3 Reply