Eight Barbells by Stephen Kopel

My catfish meows
daring me chuckle its chin,
tickle her dorsal fin,
and, under one paw, the purrfect lure -
mouse missing A Tale of Two Cities.

She answers to Ginsberg
howling catastrophic sighs
as I seize hot ribs
off her bony plates, no scales
to weigh coleslaw or spuds.

Mud's its murky hiding place
when a canine oddball calls. . .

Though Mutt slobbers fat slurps
and G.'s air bladder burps,
I kidnap catnip and force-feed 'em.

Stephen Kopel