Inside Diameter
Clarence Major


Red mullet, rosy in its sleep
profile, red mullet on a white plate.
Straight ahead!
Blue table cloth as frame.
Mullus barbatus does not smile up
from its dead trilia beidha eye.
Olive oil glows on its scales.
Red mullet, red mullet
olive oil is not its blood.

Before you eat the red mullet,
embrace at the table : especially
if you are not a mullidae expert.
The goatfish will kick.
Pray to the Red Sea and
the Suez Canal. Become skilled
at fishing, and fishing
around the bones. Do not tickle
its erectile barbels. It will
not laugh at itself.
Scrape the slime from your body.
Have a loved one drag a rake
along your thighs. Clip
the matted hair. Clean under
your finger nails.

© 1985 Clarence Major

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