Ophelia in Aspic

she is under the rice

fingers poking up through the water

playing air piano


are fish allowed

to swim the paddies?


they should be

flashes of koi gold

among rich green


every hillside

a rice aquarium


with jazzy flowing

fish and rice

fit for a Sumo wrestler


who secretly yearns

to play furniture music


and wrap

her sacred curls

in airy zen piano

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Richard Peabody
Richard Peabody is the author of a novella, three short story collections, and seven poetry books. He is a native Washingtonian and teaches fiction writing at Johns Hopkins University, where he received the Faculty Awards for Distinguished Professional Achievement and Teaching Excellence. He is also the Beyond the Margins Above and Beyond 2013 Award winner for his outstanding service to the Washington, D.C. literary community, and he is Eckleburg‘s Patron Saint of Indie. He is the founder and co-editor of Gargoyle Magazine and editor of twenty-one anthologies including Mondo Barbie. His collection of short stories, Blue Suburban Skies, is out from Main Street Rag Press. Read “Maraschino Cherries,” an excerpt from his collection, Speed Enforced by Aircraft (The Broadkill River Press, 2012).