i find you thieving me
in small pieces
but better this
& still in separate skins

we did not swim
unthinking into wholeness–
we could be anglerfish
grown together, you fused into me
like a scar not cut but acquired

we could share
one bloodstream
call it passion
& not dependence
but let’s not lie

freedom from something
this deep
means  your murder
& my wounding

***Something I read this week prompted me to do some reading on deep sea anglerfish.  During mating, the much smaller male fuses to the female’s body, and becomes part of her; eventually reduced to a pair of testicles.  Ugh.  That is not a level of intimacy I would actively seek.

About Susan L Daniels

I am a firm believer that politics are personal, that faith is expressed through action, and that life is something that must be loved and lived authentically--or why bother with any of it?
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53 Responses to identity

  1. And the two shall become one! Hmmmm! Deadlier than the male!

  2. annotating60 says:

    I thought this incredibly well thought out and written. Excellent writing–though I don’t think you need to explain about the reality—that aside it doesn’t take away from the pleasure I had reading it several times.>KB

  3. janehewey says:

    read at first, not knowing the inspiration, and was fascinated with this take on intimacy. I agree, it is a little- um… boundary-lacking and I would not actively seek it out; but I do find the image quite beautiful.

    • Thanks, Jane–I am in your camp. There is intimacy and then there is that threatened complete loss of self, literally, in the case of these fish. I think we all need more autonomy than this….

  4. claudia says:

    oh my…this is def. not the becoming one i would want to have…think it’s important that both stay independent personalities beside the being one…which has its challenges i admit..ha…but makes love and life also interesting…a fine write susan

  5. Green Speck says:

    It’s tough becoming one I should say !!!

  6. nelle says:

    Sounds like the work of nightmare, sheesh.

  7. ruleofstupid says:

    I have filled my pants with angel fish in expectation of massively impressive testicles any day soon… Here’s hoping 🙂

  8. brian miller says:

    dang…there is a subtle and building intensity in this that makes your closure just stunning…the immeshment into each other, i think we can lose much of ourselves….and then in losing the other i wonder what do we have left?

  9. vivinfrance says:

    I don’t think even marriage should go that far! A very clever poem. Creepy, but well written.

    • Thanks, Viv, and I agree. I think this calls for a bumper sticker type phrasing–there is intimacy, and there is being consumed. I’ll stick to garden-variety intimacy, thanks very much 😉

  10. Mary says:

    Spare me that kind of relationship. A very vivid write. I would bet there are some human relationships that have similarity as well. Sigh. Thoughtfully written.

  11. jomul7 says:

    so there are “femme fatale” in the sea kingdom too! Mating habits of animals and insects are sometimes much more “interesting” than human sexuality. I really liked this one!

  12. Okay, once I get beyond the testicals image:) I like this, the importance of individuality and the kool way ideas come to us.

  13. hedgewitch says:

    I had a guest post on my blog on the anglerfish–it’s a powerful metaphor, and too often a true one. You use it superbly here.

  14. Beth Winter says:

    Maintaining self can be a test of will and test of a relationship. I think it is important (but then again, I am still single :p) Wonderful work.

  15. This is awesome and your note made me laugh – I had to read about sexual cannibalism in insects eariler in the week for one of my poems and just had to stop.

  16. Bruce Ruston says:

    This is the second time this week that I have crossed my legs ewwwwwwww but funny

  17. Sabio Lantz says:

    I guess with the evolution of consciousness, we humans have a chance to give give unselfish love to a mate, but also the tools to pretend we are more than an anglerfish. All that topped with self-deception and bang! We get poetry. 🙂

    Fun poem — loved the angler metaphor.

  18. Gene says:

    Hmm, an interesting piece. I like the undertone of violence, of a devouring taking place, in the name of mating, of passion perhaps. All unions leave marks and scars, and some take everything you got.

    • Yes, Gene, and in the case of these fish, quite literally. Some take everything you’ve got is right… Though I personally prefer more of a partner than a devourer. Then again, I am no angler 😉

  19. explicitly well expressed! Well understood ~I love your writing and genuineness in everything you write for the soul! Big hug~Debbie

  20. ayala says:

    a powerful metaphor…I enjoyed this, Susan.

  21. Scary fact! gripping image in your poem, greatly enjoyed it, thanks.

  22. Wow. Should one seek freedom from something this deep? I love this line “like a scar not cut but acquired.”

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