Of Suckers and Fins

“A rare fossil preserved a squid attack from 200 million years ago...”
— Business Insider
, May 9, 2020

                   A fossil testifies 
           the oldest record of murder: 
                   a squid with a fish in its beak. 

A deep-sea slaughter caught—petrified—red-tentacled. 
           Motive: hunger. 
Cause of death: 

                   devouring for one 
           and asphyxiation for the other. 
                   They say the cephalopod’s greed 

took it to its grave. 
           In one version,
it literally bit more than it could chew 

                   and choked. 
           In the other, the predator, 
                   euphoric to savor its fresh dish without threat of sharing, 

sank to an ocean depth 
           too scant of oxygen. 
Summers swell 

                   voracious with their heat 
           and lick polar caps 
                   into slush that in turn feeds 

the engorging seas. Will our own 
           blind consumerism
hook us in the end? 

                   Our violent ignorance 
           framed in so blissful 
                   mid-bite. 


Eric Odynocki

Eric Odynocki is a teacher and writer from New York. His work is often inspired by his experience as a first-generation American of Mexican, Ukrainian, and Jewish descent. Eric's work has been published in American Poetry Journal, Green Mountains Review, [PANK], Magma Poetry, and others.