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By Nathan Leslie
The men hold gourds
in their left hands as
they yank the lake
with scoop nets for red-eyed
tetras, the color of grass
tendrils shot through with sun.
They will grind the shoalers alive,
stone into stone, a paste
with cassava and rice, and egg.
Fish all day for a pound.
Some cast spells, rubbing board
and root, others hex driving
nails into a spirit carving.
Can't do this always--luck's limit.
Watch them by the waters,
plucking prisms from their
nets, thunking the gourds
with the thrashing fish.
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Document last modified on: 02/17/2003