My WordPress buddy Murisopsis has issued another CHALLENGE FOR NATIONAL POETRY MONTH.  Like last year’s, it consists of 13 prompts, one for each Monday, Wednesday, and Friday in April.  They can be completed in any order.  If you are interested in participating, click on the above link for the prompts and rules for posting.

Prompt #1 is “Use the following words in a poem – fish, hands, lips.”  Luckily for me, I had a Haiku-sized fish story.  We moved in October to a house near Lake Erie, a short jaunt from Nickel Plate Beach.  We often walk our dogs down there.  A few weeks ago, we were met by an eerie sight, one that got me to wondering, in light of the current plague, if the signs from Revelation might be in progress.  Folks who have lived here their whole lives and are intimately familiar with the life cycle and behavior of shad, enjoyed a hearty guffaw at my expense.  I met the prompt’s requirements by slipping in a homophone.  Listen; it’s there.


Thousands of beached fish!
Apocalypse?  Old hands laugh,
happens every spring

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17 thoughts on “SHAD HAPPENS

  1. slmret April 2, 2020 / 2:30 pm

    This could be a story of Southern California’s grunion as well!

    Liked by 3 people

    • Tippy Gnu April 2, 2020 / 3:26 pm

      I remember grunion hunting as a kid, in Oceanside, California. We brought home buckets of them, and fried them up. Good eating.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. murisopsis April 3, 2020 / 9:42 am

    Hehe! Yup! This is a really good one! Apocalypse! hehehehehe! Looks like your muse has a wry sense of humor! Thanks so much for playing along!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Just Joan April 3, 2020 / 9:47 am

      Thanks for putting the challenge out there. I guess the dead fish thing is common to those living by a lake or ocean, but I gotta say, I was pretty freaked out. Waiting for the Four Horsemen to gallop by while the sun goes dark and the moon turns to blood.


    • Just Joan April 3, 2020 / 9:28 pm

      No, I didn’t try any. Wasn’t sure how long they’d been beached or if they were safe to eat. 🙂


  3. circumstance227 April 5, 2020 / 6:47 pm

    It took me a while to get the homophone part. You are so darn clever!
    As for shad, I’m a laughing old hand – my family lives on the shores of Lake Michigan and we have experienced the same thing for years.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Just Joan April 5, 2020 / 7:05 pm

      I’m from around here, 227, but I’ve never lived by the lake or enjoyed daily access to a beach. One day the sand was soft and clean, the next, littered with a million dead fish. I was seriously freaking out. I went home and re-read the signs of the end times in Revelation. Then I asked a neighbor, who laughed so hard he snorted. Question: what happens to all these dead fish? Do they just decompose and return to dust? They are seriously stinking up the joint. 🙂


      • circumstance227 April 5, 2020 / 7:10 pm

        I totally get your freak out. I have experienced this dozens of times and it is still creepy. In Milwaukee, I think sea gulls do most of the removal work and underpaid County employees do the rest.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Just Joan April 5, 2020 / 7:55 pm

        The sea gulls might have snatched up a few when they were fresh but now, they won’t touch them. The state park is operating with a skeleton crew, maybe because of Coronavirus, and the fish have been there for several weeks. You can smell them a block away. 😦


  4. righteousbruin9 April 5, 2020 / 10:53 pm

    I was intrigued by this, because, as Slmret said, southern California has its grunion runs, which bring out a similar party-time onslaught of hunter-gatherers. My wife and i joined one such event, two days after our wedding, when we camped on a beach.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Just Joan April 6, 2020 / 10:29 am

      I guess you have to know when the shad/grunion thing is going to happen, or get lucky, as you and your wife did. A person with the good 411 could have taken home a massive haul of fish. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    • Just Joan April 9, 2020 / 9:14 am

      Thanks. Lips hidden in a place where you can hear them but not see them. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

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