Small Sea Monsterfrom a sculpture by Severo Calzetta da Ravenna
The sea monster of 16th century Italian origin
looks in bronze like a freak show dog with scales
and a half human face. Its webbed hands arched
delicately like a lawyer’s on a witness stand just before
cross examination. A tail that could be a dinner bell.
Coming up for air from another dream of drowning
I think the tiny dog standing on my chest looks more sea
monsterly, and I wonder if I’m exchanging
one depth for a murkier other, of waking.
it’s only at the surface that we’re surprised
by what breaks through, in the shallows
that things get stranded between tides
like this hideous thought splishing about
that in the deep would be graceful, near invisible, at home.