fisherman by Daniel Marshall


i find scorch marks on my walk,
black smears hardly noticeable against
scoria rock hemming the sea wall;
a place concealed from the road, where tourists do not go
due to the stench of sewage dumped by a nearby factory;
here fishermen gathered in the early morning hours

: the ribs of mackerel & ribbons of blue scales
left in the embers, extinguished over time.
a stack of soju bottles & the splinters
of disposable chopsticks tipped with ramen stains
in 5 neat piles where each man sat.

what anecdotes were shared, what topics raised?
i see no footprints back to the road,
there seems to be no testimony
as to where they were destined next;
did they jump into the sea & swim to meet the dawn?