Immortal Jellyfish



I ask’d thee, ‘Give me immortality.’

—Alfred, Lord Tennyson, ‘Tithonus’



Pinkie fingernail-small. No brain, all brawn.

I bloom in ballast water, bell awake

in a cell a far cry from the marquee

of the sea. You goggle at, prod my art

—unfussed, cruciate, scarlet. Have a heart,

you pray, aspiring Tithonuses. Make

known to us your mystery. Let me be

crystal clear—just the unfeared can redawn.

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