Red Fins


Here lies the blossom of the river
The red rose with sharp thorns
The neon in a school of grey
And the impact on many lives

She believed
That only dead fish go with the flow
And she lived by what she believed in
No matter the looks she received from the other fish
Or the lonely life she lived
On her side of the bowl
Separated by an invisible line
Created by the other two bettas

Rose always went with her heart
Hoping that it would save her in life
And though it betrayed her,
She made the best of the little time she had

Her red fins still shine in the river
For the current is no match against her abilities
And her high cornered mouth
Still smiles the half smirk she always gave
Even from under her grave

Jumping up,
And swirling down,
Rose always understood
That the sloping corners of your lips
Meant a trouble had come your way
And as she twirled,
And twisted,
She never quite looked
Like she,
Herself,
Was happy

Maybe it was the isolation she suffered everyday
When the other bettas swam and played
Together,
And Rose watched
Maybe that light in her eyes
Had faded long ago
When she was first taken from her river
And put in a prison
A prison that didn’t allow creativity
One that never supported different
And that didn’t accept unique

Now
The faded memory of a trick gone wrong
Is in the back of the minds
And the rerun of the red fins
Flapping on the wood floor
Is but a story
But when a red rose is spotted
With thorns long as spears
And curves
Round as balls
They remember;
The freak in the bowl
They recall;
The mistake in the tank
But
She looks down on them
And she swims through their nightmares
And she jumps
And spins
Until their worried lips
Make their way up
Signaling that her work is done

And finally,
She rests
And goes with the flow
For Rose lives by her beliefs
And dies by them, too.

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