Ruth Williams

He said, "The Eal Gives Stamina to its Eaters"
Meet My Marlinspike

He Said, "The Eal Gives Stamina to its Eaters"
So walking past the restaurant, each fire pit,
each hunched back, each chopstick pick becomes eel. 

Each child born to a couple already holding hands is

an eel inside their laced fingers. 
Even the deaf woman selling blood-stuffed sundae
waves her hand at me like an eel.

It is typhoon season, the sun slid underneath the clouds.

Just a white slip edge showing—eel. 
Inside my ninth floor room, the eel of grill smoke
undulates along the bedroom windows.
The restaurant crowd below, then,
a murmuring pool of eels. 
Guttural vowels adorn my bed,
the roiling eel of a Korean tongue.
Eel over eel, my hands climb the distance,
Mt. Geomdansan’s fanned cliffs.

Meet My Marlinspike

We were mysterious, leeward. Knew no translation.
Instead, I played loud music to compromise my downwind position.
Your edged and filigreed legs. My white flag ankles.
I am always writing of the way lust splays our elbows, legs.
The twining of the body is the embodiment of slag heaps.
Coupled bags of rice that filter their shufflings
through a thousand little flat tongues. Yes,
the accent, and yes, the rising steam.
That too is articulate, too “authentic”
despite my location. Fuck cultural difference.
And fuck your Derridian analysis
for good measured spoons. There—
the fleeting clasp at the back of the knee!
It deconstructs what we lack:
what capsules me on the streets of your city.