Catfish Heads on a Clothesline

Whoever cut them from their spines
     was a preacher, I’ll bet—or else
wanted to show off each shearing
     of maw from body flawlessly:
all these glistening ampersands

     of grief, loose string of e’s
found in et cetera, three repeated
     vowels pinned up to complicate
flesh—my obsession with it.
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