An Explanation of Sorts


Surface Feeders



such a large expanse,

a canvas suitable

for any mirage, hidden,

or sunken hulk—

a veritable game preserve!


If you chanced

upon castaways,

they might warn you—

any vessel could be

a pirate rogue,

to trust no sail

to an invisible wind.

Do you know your bait?



so much thirst

tries the waters,

and grasps

every float who,

to best Jonah,

recall Samuel,

says “Here am I.”


Raise these seers,

float their ire.

Sunken reefs,

blackest storms,

churn the surf,

swirl the current.

But you are not home,

not free.

You cannot cheat

this game—

discover and conceal.


Victims of prattling

prophets tell you true—

presumptuous lips

do sink ships.

The doctrine of the sea

teaches every shark,

any vulture, to


the baptistery.


Bait is for summoning,

boats to keep out the water

or other carnivore.


lifesaver sages

suited up for disaster,

with no other place to go.

Still, not all

who tread water

are shipwreck,

nor command

Galilean feats!


Here is my craft

and sullen conversation.

I read time’s wake,

feel the current

that tugs

earthen vessels

toward inevitable shores.

Know the Captain

and you’ll not mistake me.

I witness the plot,

fish the scenery.

Listen in,

if you want.

Eat out

at your own



Surface Feeders was written by Teague and is used here with his permission.