by Jack Strange
That would be me
One windless evening the bass started biting
just before sunset as I glided along
the bayou in a pirogue with a thrust
of the paddle here and there for direction.
I was casting a Pop-R up against the bank
among the cypress trunks and sinewy stumps
and overhanging limbs and shrubs and twitching
and popping the bait until the fish struck.
To see and hear and feel the violent burst
of each strike and to set the hook firmly
in each jaw and each battle kept me out
until the mosquitoes and the gator came.
At first a bumpy head at least a foot wide
and three feet long with big shiny black eyes
inched toward the pirogue and me as if we
were just what he had in mind for dinner.
I dropped my rod and thought I'd better paddle
fast and hard before Wally got too close
but Wally sensed panic and to my horror
I saw the swish of his tail fifteen feet back.
The gator accelerated smooth and quick
and locked its gaze upon the very spot
the paddle broke water to push me away
until the jaws snapped and cracked it in half.
I slid away watching as the gator shook
its monstrous head free of the broken splinter
and I realized now he'd be coming again
for me down the bayou with half a paddle.
The pirogue rocked on the wave Wally made
during all the commotion and sure enough
he came again stalking the little boat
now stalled and adrift so I had to act fast.
I untied and lifted my stringer of bass
gasping and wet like a shiny green fleece
and hefted and hurled it aiming precisely
at the slashing jaws of the reptilian beast.
The gator struck at the fish with a splash
of his big toothy head and chomped down on three
huge bass and swallowed them whole in one gulp
then snapped up three more that were still on the string.
So Wally was happy for now as the sun
went down and I wondered how to get back
to the dock half a mile away in the dark
with Wally nearby and perhaps hungry yet.
Then I got an idea and picked up my rod
and cast the old Pop-R past Wally's head
and chugged it back popping in front of his face
where soon he attacked it and hooked himself good.
Wally went down with a jerk and a swirl
and made such a wave I grabbed the boat rail
with one hand while holding onto the rod
which bent almost double as the line stretched tight.
The pirogue took off like a rocket boat
as Wally swam up the bayou to flee
the pressure and drag and the alien hook
underwater and then on top with me.
In no time I neared the dock in the dark
and slackened the line until Wally shook free
then glided right up to the dock and tied up
and got out fishless but at least in one piece.
Honey, this isn't a poem! You have taken a great adventure short story and placed it in a poetic format but it isn't a poem. A poem usually doesn't have complete sentences. It has rhythmic lines, kind of a sing-song kind of rhythm. I suggest that you rewrite this as a short story. . . .
Rating included: 2.0 stars out of 5.0 stars. (Note: A 3.0 is Average.)
Response to this review:
LOL! I love this review and will treasure it always -- so much that in the spirit of fair use, I will append it to "Gator Bait" to your ever-enduring credit.
Include 1002 Gift Points with this response.