Gail White: Edna Millay's Goldfish



The world stands out on either side,
No wider than the bowl is wide.
Above the world is stretched the sky,
No higher than the water's high.

The fish that bears a gallant heart
Can push the glassy walls apart,
And with a visionary soul
Beholds Atlantis in his bowl.

But he whose heart is parched and spare,
Even in water gasps for air.
And he whose soul is thin and flat
Is candy for the family cat.

(First published in Iambs & Trochees)